Lyric cousins

Lyric cousins

: Poetry and musical form

by Fiona Sampson
22nd February, 2018

£19.99 £19.99 Save 0% | Paperback


Leading poet, critic and former musician explores the 'deep forms' common to both poetry and music

Today, poetry and art music occupy similar cultural positions: each has a tendency to be regarded as problematic, 'difficult' and therefore 'elitist'. Despite this, the audiences and numbers of participants for each are substantial: yet they tend not to overlap. This is odd, because the forms share early history in song and saga, and have some striking similarities, often summed up in the word 'lyric'.?

These similarities include much that is most significant to the experience of each, and so of most interest to practitioners and audiences. They encompass, at the very least: the way each art-form is aural, and takes place in time; a shared reliance on temporal, rather than spatial, forms; an engagement with sensory experience and pleasure; availability for both shared public performance and private reading, sight-reading and hearing in memory; and scope for non-denotative meaning. In other words, looking at these elements in music is a way to look at them in poetry, and vice versa.

This is a study of these two formal craft traditions that is concerned with the similarities in their roles, structures, projects and capacities.

Key Features

  • Sets out a new way to think about both music and poetry
  • Doesn't make its arguments from within or for one particular school of music or poetry but has wide applicability
  • Uses each 'cousin' art-form to cast light on the other as a whole: it is not just for poet-musicians, or musicians writing for voice
  • A rare 'joint' perspective: written by an award-winning poet who was formerly a professional musician
Fiona Sampson is Professor of Poetry and Director of Roehampton Poetry Centre, at the University of Roehampton. She is currently the Editor of the journal Poem and from 2005-2012 she was the Editor of Poetry Review. She is a prize-winning poet and former professional musician whose works have been published in more than thirty languages. A Fellow and Council Member of the Royal Society of Literature, Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Fellow of the English Association and Trustee of the Wordsworth Trust, her publications include 24 volumes of poetry, criticism and philosophy of language. She has 12 books in translation, and has received the Zlaten Prsten (Macedonia) and the Charles Angoff Award (US), and been shortlisted for the Evelyn Encelot Prize for European Women Poets. She has received the Newdigate Prize, a Cholmondeley award, a Hawthornden fellowship, Kathleen Blundell and Oppenheimer-John Downes Awards from the Society of Authors, Writer's Awards from the Arts Councils of England and Wales and various Poetry Book Society commendations, and has been shortlisted twice for both the T.S. Eliot Prize and Forward prizes. Recent books include a new edition of Percy Bysshe Shelley for Faber (PBS Book-club Choice) and a poetry collection, Coleshill (Chatto, PBS Recommendation). The US edition of her selected poems appeared from Sheep Meadow Press in 2013.

Details & Specs

Author: Fiona Sampson

Publisher: Edinburgh University Press

Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781474432627

Publication Date: 22nd February, 2018

Pages: 240

Dimensions: 216 x 138 x 13 mm

Availability: Available, usually dispatched within 3 days

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