A. Critical and Comparative Studies

61. McLeod, Dan. ‘Asia and the Poetic Discovery of America from Emerson to Snyder’. In Discovering the Other: Humanities East and West, edited by Robert S. Ellwood. Malibu: Undena, 1984.

Finds the use of Asian materials central to the development of a distinctly American poetry. Since ‘the attraction of Asian traditions for American poets has usually been accompanied by dissatisfaction with a critical part of our transplanted European culture’, American poets who have recognised ‘poetic insights expressed effectively in an Asian work’ have been ‘inclined . . . to pursue those directions’ in their own work. The result often has been that the ‘borrowings’ have ‘enriched and helped to define [American] culture’, to such an extent that ‘the Asian sources in our poetry contribute to its American identity’. Focuses particularly on Gary Snyder’s discovery and use of Chinese materials, but includes reference throughout to the effects of Japanese sources in American poetry, including Pound’s understanding of the nô in relation to The Cantos.





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