In this unusual and insightful collection, fourteen full-length literary interviews with innovative female poets of the last forty years, enhanced with a selection of their poems and prefaced by short introductions, present a wide and accessible range of forms, schools, politics, and conversations. By giving us each poet's own voice in a medium other than poetry, the interviews provide important cultural and historical contexts that help define notions of innovation and contribute to a fuller understanding of these experimental poems. Poets and literary scholars Elisabeth Frost and Cynthia Hogue selected writers with particular attention to diversity in terms of ethnicity, philosophical concerns, and aesthetic movements, including the New York School, the Black Arts Movement, and language writing. By bringing together poets not usually considered in the same critical context, the editors clarify the ways in which these innovative women have affected ideas of poetry and poetic practice. The engaging interviews (whose questions are often as interesting and informed as the responses), introductory texts, and selected poems allow readers to forge productive connections among the most important voices of late twentieth-century American poetry.
Elisabeth Frost is the author of The Feminist Avant-Garde in American Poetry (IOWA 2003); she is associate professor of English at Fordham University. She has published poetry in such journals as Boulevard, the Denver Quarterly, and the Yale Review. Cynthia Hogue is professor of English and Jonathan and Maxine Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry at Arizona State University. Author of Scheming Women: Poetry, Privilege, and the Politics of Subjectivity, she has published three poetry collections and two chapbooks of poetry.