This study examines the feminist, African-American and populist avant-garde that flourished in the era of American modernism. Arguing that American modernism runs much deeper than the seminal contributions of Wallace Stevens, T.S. Eliot and Ezra Pound, Kalaidjian revisits the "historical avant-garde" showcased in magazines of the period. This revisionary study discusses public art in the Depression era, proletarian subculture, and the social poetics of Kenneth Fearing, Muriel Rukeyser and Langston Hughes. Kalaidjian establishes a continuity between interwar modernist movements and the contemporary work of Barbara Kruger, Jenny Holzer, Sue Coe, Hans Haacke and others.
Walter Kalaidjian is professor of English at Emory University. He is the editor of The Cambridge Companion to Modern American Poetry (Cambridge, 2015) and most recently the author of The Edge of Modernism: American Poetry and the Traumatic Past. I selected him for his work on Modern American poetry.