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The Europe of Trusts contains three brilliant, landmark books which Susan Howe first published in the early 1980s: The Liberties, Pythagorean Silence, and Defenestration of Prague. These are the books -- following her volumes from the previous decade (Hinge Picture, Chanting at the Crystal Sea, Cabbage Gardens, and Secret History of the Dividing Line) -- which established The Europe of Trusts contains three brilliant, landmark books which Susan Howe first published in the early 1980s: The Liberties, Pythagorean Silence, and Defenestration of Prague. These are the books -- following her volumes from the previous decade (Hinge Picture, Chanting at the Crystal Sea, Cabbage Gardens, and Secret History of the Dividing Line) -- which established Howe as one of America's most interesting and important contemporary writers. "Her work, " as Geoffrey O'Brien put it, "is a voyage of reconnaissance in language, a sounding out of ancient hiding places, and it is a voyage full of risk. 'Words are the only clues we have, ' she has said. 'What if they fail us?'"


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The Europe of Trusts contains three brilliant, landmark books which Susan Howe first published in the early 1980s: The Liberties, Pythagorean Silence, and Defenestration of Prague. These are the books -- following her volumes from the previous decade (Hinge Picture, Chanting at the Crystal Sea, Cabbage Gardens, and Secret History of the Dividing Line) -- which established The Europe of Trusts contains three brilliant, landmark books which Susan Howe first published in the early 1980s: The Liberties, Pythagorean Silence, and Defenestration of Prague. These are the books -- following her volumes from the previous decade (Hinge Picture, Chanting at the Crystal Sea, Cabbage Gardens, and Secret History of the Dividing Line) -- which established Howe as one of America's most interesting and important contemporary writers. "Her work, " as Geoffrey O'Brien put it, "is a voyage of reconnaissance in language, a sounding out of ancient hiding places, and it is a voyage full of risk. 'Words are the only clues we have, ' she has said. 'What if they fail us?'"

30 review for The Europe of Trusts: Poetry

  1. 5 out of 5

    Francisco Márquez

    Susan Howe sets out such a grand project and goal that is, in essence, impossible. But to see her write as a total rebel, as a woman taking over the patriarchs, is truly mind-blowing, delightful, and beautiful.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Shaun

    One of the most striking features of Howe's poetry is how affective and effective the language. There are a great deal of moments in her poetry where Howe's language doesn't make syntactic or narrative sense, but still conveys a certain rhythm or implacable meaning. Howe's work did not always make complete sense to me, but the construction and intricacy struck me. This collection showcases some of the breadth of Howe's experimental style, particularly with the inclusion of The Liberties. This One of the most striking features of Howe's poetry is how affective and effective the language. There are a great deal of moments in her poetry where Howe's language doesn't make syntactic or narrative sense, but still conveys a certain rhythm or implacable meaning. Howe's work did not always make complete sense to me, but the construction and intricacy struck me. This collection showcases some of the breadth of Howe's experimental style, particularly with the inclusion of The Liberties. This collection features an examination of female suffering at the hands of tyrannical patriarchal figures, particularly centering around Cordelia from King Lear and Stella, a major figure in Jonathan Swift's life. The poetry shifts between dramatic form and poetic form, adding to the complexity of the "performative" aspects of Howe's poetics. One of Howe's strengths as a poet comes with her attention to polysyllabic sonic textures. Her works are always attentive to a sense of hearing the work, even if they are not necessarily meant to have a musicality to them. The sense of interrelation between lines, stanzas, and images also comes from her sonic sensibilities. Her work is above all intriguing. It provokes thought and consideration, and is particularly helpful for poets who are beginning to look towards experimental forms and experimental language. Howe provides a point of entry for writers and readers to recognize the power of individual words and the work they do.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Muthee BM

    Bought this the same week as My Life from a different vendor but both books were from the same library. Pythagorean silence is now a favourite though it took some time to get (dis)oriented by the words, to see how they moved my eyes across the page, how they moved my feelings, and their sound on my lips.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Antonio Delgado

    For Susan Howe Words have mythological meanings but also current meanings that often evolve but that can also be retrieved and distorted.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Michale Keir - Cheslock

    who cares if you can follow along when language is useless anyway. Pairs well with Dickinson

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Overall, I liked this book a lot. She definitely has done some very interesting things with poetry. Many of her images and world choices are quite compelling. In some of her more experimental (i.e. less traditional) poems, though, it seemed like she was just listing interesting words, none of which connected in a coherent way to any of the others. There was also one play-like poem, which didn't grab me as much.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    Among my favorite of Howe's books, I go back and back and back to this text, obsessively re-reading into and around it, examining how it moves on the page, in my mind, what it says and evokes, how it sounds in my head or on my lips, where it places me and what it tells me of self, other, thens, nows, language, leanings.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cooper Renner

    Generally speaking I understand almost nothing of what Howe writes, but I love the work anyway. This book was mostly disappointing to me. Often skirting right at the edge of "sense" but feeling too abstracted and "brainy" and not rooted enough in language.

  9. 4 out of 5

    S

    1937- sister of Fanny Howe

  10. 5 out of 5

    David

    Initially found this less accessible than the others I'd read, but after two readings I think "Pythagorean Silence" is one of the most amazing poems I've ever read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

  12. 5 out of 5

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jerome Ellis

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Moore

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jerrold

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

  17. 4 out of 5

    Martin Jack

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelly Neal

  19. 4 out of 5

    Mark

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rob Mclennan

  21. 4 out of 5

    Stark

  22. 4 out of 5

    David Connerley Nahm

  23. 4 out of 5

    Peter

  24. 5 out of 5

    matt Sandler

    splatter. swift. defenestration.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

  26. 4 out of 5

    Andy

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly

  28. 5 out of 5

    Paul

  29. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

  30. 5 out of 5

    J. Neil

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