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Border BlursConcrete Poetry in England and Scotland$
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Greg Thomas

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781789620269

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789620269.001.0001

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?Concrete Poetry and After

?Concrete Poetry and After


(p.249) Chapter Seven ?Concrete Poetry and After
Border Blurs

Greg Thomas

Liverpool University Press

Having considered concrete poetry in England and Scotland largely in relation to global trends, in the final chapter this text turns its attention to the binding characteristics of concrete poetry in those two nations. What unique features can be picked out which allow us to speak of ‘concrete poetry in England and Scotland’ as a distinct and coherent phenomenon? The argument is presented that, while concrete poetry in its initial, international guises often represented a response to modernist design aesthetics and semiotic theory, for poets in England and Scotland it was more likely to be placed in creative proximity to Anglo-American modernist poetry. In this sense, concrete poetry in England and Scotland can be considered one aspect of what Eric Mottram called ‘The British Poetry Revival’, that period during the 1950s-70s when a range of British poets began to reincorporate modernist forms and themes into their work. This occurred partly in response to a range of shifting social and economic circumstances, including the emergence of a global imaginative culture through the development of international markets, the space race, and the nuclear arms race of the post-war period, and the emergence of state-funded artistic and literary culture within Britain.

Keywords:   Conclusion, Concrete poetry, Anglo American modernist poetry, Modernist design, Semiotic theory, Eric Mottram, British Poetry Revival, Space race, Nuclear arms race, State funded arts

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