A close study of four French-language poets and the poetry of exile.
Poetry has often been understood as a powerful vector of collective belonging. The idea that certain poets are emblematic of a national culture is one of the chief means by which literature historicizes itself, inscribes itself in a shared cultural past, and supplies modes of belonging to those who consume it. But, how does the exiled, migrant, or translingual poet complicate this narrative? For Armen Lubin, Ghérasim Luca, Edmond Jabès, and Michelle Grangaud, the practice of poetry is inseparable from a sense of restlessness or unease. Ranging across borders within and beyond the Francosphere—from Algeria, Armenia, Egypt, and Romania—this book shows how a poetic practice inflected by exile, statelessness, or non-belonging has the potential to disrupt long-held assumptions about the relation between subjects, the language they use, and the place from which they speak.
About the Author
Greg Kerr is a lecturer in French at the University of Glasgow. He is the author of Dream Cities: Utopia and Prose by Poets in Nineteenth-Century France.