David Shields's Reality Hunger: A Manifesto PDF

By David Shields

ISBN-10: 0307593231

ISBN-13: 9780307593238

With this landmark e-book, David Shields fast-forwards the dialogue of the imperative creative problems with our time. Who owns principles? How transparent is the excellence among fiction and nonfiction? Has the rate of electronic tradition rendered conventional modes obsolete? Exploring those and similar questions, Shields orchestrates a refrain of voices, previous and current, to reframe debates in regards to the veracity of memoir and the relevance of the unconventional. He argues that our tradition is keen about “reality,” accurately simply because we event rarely any, and urgently demands new kinds that include and produce the fractured nature of latest experience.

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The notion of poetry’s knowledge of itself suggests a shorthand for the knowledges of those who have invested in poetry. That consciousness privileged in relation to the process of poetry’s survival is waking, decisive and certainly, for all practical purposes, regards itself as superior to (at least able to stand above) those productions it sees itself as duty-bound to discriminate. It could at this point easily be argued that this position above is the canonic view and that it is imposed on literature, by its mediators, as a kind of wishful thinking; these mediators hoping to glorify themselves by association with that clarity and elevation of view, to which poetic imagination is entitled.

It is this, to hold the candle up to the album. (in Hoover, 1994: 177) Perhaps what is most unsettling in poetry’s potential is its role in keeping questions open, in unresolving, in (to reverse Kant’s aude sapere maxim) daring not to know. Nietzsche exhorts ‘we must not pester a poet with subtle interpretations, but should take pleasure in the uncertainty of his horizon, as if the road to various other thoughts were still open’ (1994: 125). As if the road were still open…poetry, as 50 Poetry, Consciousness, Community witness of and as exercise of consciousness in the practice of betweenness, is in a position to make a critical intervention in reality, which itself becomes of what we share.

But that’s just our simile. The character’s invented, his haste is make-believe, his news inhuman. (in Milosz, 1996: 68) As for Eliot’s idea that the bad poet is personal, David Antin devotes his work ‘a private occasion in a public place’ to a problematics of self-consciousness which draw us from such a conclusion: im doing what poets have done for a long time they’ve talked out of a private sense sometimes from a private need but theyve talked about it in a rather peculiar context for anybody to eavesdrop (in Hoover, 1994: 232) If we discard both the intentionalist fallacy and the view over poetry which canonic criticism cannot but claim; if we sacrifice, that is, the prospect of definitive judgement for its turns with ambivalence, what choice have we got but to commit the ontological sin of regarding poetry as constituting a consciousness in its own right?

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Reality Hunger: A Manifesto by David Shields


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