In this Book
- Listening Up, Writing Down, and Looking Beyond: Interfaces of the Oral, Written, and Visual
- Published by: Wilfrid Laurier University Press
Listening Up, Writing Down, and Looking Beyond is an interdisciplinary collection that gathers the work of scholars and performance practitioners who together explore questions about the oral, written, and visual. The book includes the voices of oral performance practitioners, while the scholarship of many of the academic contributors is informed by their participation in oral storytelling, whether as poets, singers, or visual artists. Its contributions address the politics and ethics of the utterance and text: textualizing orature and orality, simulations of the oral, the poetics of performance, and reconstructions of the oral.1
Bring Da Noise: The Poetics of Performance, chez d’bi young and Oni Joseph
George Elliott Clarke
George Elliott Clarke’s “Bring Da Noise: The Poetics of Performance, chez d’bi young and Oni Joseph” ranges widely in discussing African-Canadian writers’ performance poetics, especially those of dub poet d’bi.young.anitafrika and performance poet Oni Joseph. It is web-linked to “the storyteller’s integrity,” anitafrika’s oral essay with performance elements, recorded at the The Oral, Written, and Other Verbal Media conference in Saskatoon.
Poetry Performances on the Page and Stage: Insights from Slam
“Poetry Performances on the Page and Stage: Insights from Slam” by Helen Gregory delineates the characteristics of slam poetry in order to compare these features with those of page-based poetry.
Poetry and Overturned Cars: Why Performance Poetry Can’t Be Studied (and Why We Should Study It Anyway)
Hugh Hodges’ “Poetry and Overturned Cars: Why Performance Poetry Can’t Be Studied (and Why We Should Study It Anyway)” outlines practical lessons learned during a fourth-year seminar on performance poetry at Trent University.
Echohomonymy: A Poetics of Ethos, Eros, and Erasure
In “Ecohomony: A Poetics of Ethos, Eros, and Erasure,” Adeena Karasick introduces a print-textualized performance poem as “a poetics of performance that focuses on not what is being said, but how ‘meaning’ is determined through what’s evocative, provocative, talkative.”
Dialect Poetry and the Need for Performance: The Case of William Barnes
In “Dialect Poetry and the Need for Performance: The Case of William Barnes,” T. L. Burton offers an introduction to and oral reading of the poetry of the Dorset vernacular poet (1801-1886). A web link takes readers to a video recording of this reading.
The Speech-Music Continuum
In “The Speech-Music Continuum,” sound poet and sound singer Paul Dutton offers an account of his own experiences along a sonic spectrum that stretches from verbal or syntactically coherent poetry at the one end through drum poetry at the other.
Writing and Rapping for a New South Africa: The Poetry of Lesego Rampolokeng
“Writing and Rapping for a New South Africa: The Poetry of Lesego Rampolokeng” by Gugu Hlongwane focuses on the political efficacy of turning to both oral and written poetries to reveal the myth of a unified post-apartheid South Africa.
The Ballad as Site of Rebellion: Orality, Gender, and the Granuaile Aislingi
“The Ballad as Site of Rebellion: Orality, Gender, and the Granuaile Aislingi” by Naomi Foyle uses the case of the sixteenth-century, female Irish chieftain Gráinne Ní Mháille to argue that the generalized view that oral tradition is a medium for the histories of the dominated needs to be replaced by a clear-eyed, gender-informed understanding of the power dynamics at work. On the website supplemental to this volume are recordings of the Foyle ballad and two others about Granuaile.
“pleasure for our sense, health for our hearts”: Inferring Pronuntiatio and Actio from the Text of John Donne’s Second Prebend Sermon
In “pleasure for our sense, health for our hearts": Inferring Pronuntiatio and Actio from the text of John Donne’s Second Prebend Sermon, Brent Nelson takes a heuristic approach to reconstructing the embodied performance of an English Renaissance sermon by a highly acclaimed preacher of the period.
“The Power and the Paradox” of the Spoken Story: Challenges to the Tyranny of the Written in Contemporary Canadian Fiction
“The Power and the Paradox" of the Spoken Story: Challenges to the Tyranny of the Written in Contemporary Canadian Fiction by Wendy Roy investigates the meanings of an overt focus on new forms of orality in several contemporary Canadian novels, concluding that the power of these works resides in their resistance to what Ferdinand Saussure called the tyranny of the written.
What’s In a Frame?: The Significance of Relational Word Bundles in Louise Bernice Halfe’s Blue Marrow
In “ What’s In a Frame?: The Significance of Relational Word Bundles in Louise Bernice Halfe’s Blue Marrow,” Mareike Neuhaus reads Louise Halfe’s variety of English as a reflection of Cree grammatical structures.
Towards an “Open Field”: The Ethics of the Encounter in Life Lived Like a Story
Emily Blacker’s “Towards an ‘Open Field’: The Ethics of the Encounter in Life Lived Like a Story,” examines the changes that occur when First Nations orature is recorded, transcribed, and published by academic researchers.
Becoming the Storyteller: Meaning Making in Our Age of Resistance
“Becoming the Storyteller: Meaning-Making and Our Age of Resistance” by Waziyatiwin documents this Dakota artist-scholar’s turn to arts-based qualitative inquiry to render the oral narratives of her grandmother into powerful contemporary forms.
Re-si(gh)ting the Storyteller in Textualized Orature: Photographs in The Days of Augusta
“Re-si(gh)ting the Storyteller in Textualized Orature: Photographs in The Days of Augusta” by Cara DeHaan argues that the photographs that accompany the 1973 compilation of Mary Augusta Tappage Evans’s autobiographical stories can “resite/resight” the text by bringing to mind both the bodily presence of the narrator and some specifics of the locale where she lived.
Traditionalizing Modernity and Sound Identity in Neal McLeod’s Writing of the Oral
Susan Gingell’s “Traditionalizing Modernity and Sound Identity in Neal McLeod’s Writing of the Oral,” documents movement among elements of the oral, written, and visual in McLeod’s work. His self-illustrated poetry is read as a project in reconciling Cree traditions with modernity while inscribing the sounds that Cree people make speaking Cree and Cree-inflected English.
A Nexus of Connections: Acts of Recovery, Acts of Resistance in Native Palimpsest
Kimberly Blaeser’s “A Nexus of Connections: Acts of Recovery, Acts of Resistance in Native Palimpsest” mixes storytelling, standard essayist prose about Native American oral traditions and visual arts, and her own page-based poetry to establish that the territory where orality meets writing and visual images is a “nexus of connection” that becomes dynamic as language (whether verbal or visual) leads audiences to the non-verbal.
Table of Contents
- pp. v-vi
- p. vii
- Listening Up: Performance Poetics
- The Speech–Music Continuum
- pp. 123-134
- Writing Down: Textualized Orature and Orality
- Looking Beyond: Reintegrating the Visual
- pp. 357-362
- pp. 363-380