"Lucid Interspace": Lucretian Poetics in the Contemporary American Lyric
Bracci Testasecca, Stefano
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This thesis explores the current theories of new materialism, in particular Michel Serres’ book on Lucretius, The Birth of Physics, to find new ways of reading the contemporary American Lyric. The case studies are a selection of poems by authors inspired by Wallace Stevens, Sphere: The Form of a Motion (1974) by A.R. Ammons, The Changing Light at Sandover (1982) by James Merrill, and Materialism (1993) by Jorie Graham. The aim of the thesis is to use this refreshing theory to articulate the different ways these poets imagine at once accurate and intimate relationships with the environment, partially recuperating the monistic vision that Lucretius saw between language, physics, and philosophy.