Saturday, February 7

The Last Avant-Garde: The Making of the New York School of Poets - David Lehman

"WHEN JOHN ASHBERY, Kenneth Koch, Frank O’Hara, and James Schuyler (pronounced 'SKY-luh') first lived in New York, the Korean War was in progress and McCarthyism was the scourge of freethinking intellectuals. It was the era of Levittown* and the 'silent generation' when the original Guys and Dolls was on Broadway, suburban flight was in progress, New York had three baseball teams and at least one of them played in the World Series every year. In an age of split-level conformism, the poets of the New York School put their trust in the idea of an artistic vanguard that could sanction their deviations from the norm."
Jacket2: The Plot Against the Giant . .
NY Times: Last One Off the Barricade Turn Out the Lights - Audio: John Ashbery reads from 'Sleepers Awake' (September 18, 1996. 3 mins.)