Stealing History (Paperback)

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Description


In eighty-four short, intermingling essays, Gerald Stern moves nimbly between the past and the present, the personal and the philosophical. Creating the immediacy of dailiness, he writes about what he's reading at the moment, be it Spinoza or John Cage, Maimonides or Lucille Clifton, and then seamlessly turns to memories of his student years in Europe on the G.I. Bill, or early family life in Pittsburgh, or his political and social activism.

Stern meditates on the Lamb in Christianity and Judaism. He explores the mysterious life of the dragonfly in all its permutations and examines the comedy of the Marx Brothers and the idea of adultery in Noel Coward's film Brief Encounter. Interwoven with his formidable recollections (Stern, it would seem, forgets nothing) are the author's passionate discussions of his lifelong obsessions: issues of justice; his identity as a secular Jew who has strong objections to Israel's political positions; and the idea of neighbors in various forms--from the women of Gee's Bend who together make astonishing quilts to the Polish inhabitants of the small town of Jedwabne, who on a single day in 1941 slaughtered 1,600 Jews. Revealing a poet engaged with imagination, memory, and witness, and written in Stern's signature, associative style, Stealing History is a significant literary achievement by one of our most celebrated poets.

About the Author


Gerald Stern's recent books of poetry are Early Collected Poems: 1965-1992, Save the Last Dance, This Time: New and Selected Poems, which won the National Book Award, Odd Mercy, and Bread without Sugar. His collection of essays What I Can't Bear Losing was published by Trinity University Press in trade paper in 2009. His honors include the Award of Merit Medal from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Paris Review's Bernard F. Conners Award, the Bess Hokin Award from Poetry, the Ruth Lilly Prize, four National Endowment for the Arts grants, the Pennsylvania Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts, the Jerome J. Shestack Poetry Prize from the American Poetry Review, and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. In 2005 Stern was selected to receive the Wallace Stevens Award for mastery in the art of poetry. For many years a teacher at the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop, Stern now lives in Lambertville, New Jersey.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781595341419
ISBN-10: 1595341412
Publisher: Trinity University Press
Publication Date: November 6th, 2012
Pages: 306
Language: English

 

 

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