Literary Criticism

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The Matter of Rhyme

Verse-Music and the Ring of Ideas

In the Series
Critical Voices

Christopher Norris is Distinguished Research Professor of Philosophy at the University of Cardiff in Wales, and the author of more than forty books on various topics in philosophy, literary theory, music, and the history of ideas, including most recently, Deconstruction After All and For the Tempus-Fugitives, published under the Critical Voices series, in association with Sussex Academic Press.

"Christopher Norris is one of the most erudite, original and adventurous English-language poets of our time." Terry Eagleton, Distinguished Professor of English Literature, University of Lancaster

"Chris Norris's revival of the verse-essay and verse-monologue is a rich feast of wit, erudition, and inventiveness, nicely spiced with hard-hitting satire, caustic humour, and touches of lyrical affection. Here is a distinctive poetic voice, comfortable in its medium, unflaggingly readable, offering hours of pleasure and reflection. A true delight!" Peter Lamarque, Professor of Philosophy, University of York

The poetry of ideas, a long neglected genre, has now found a vigorous and resourceful champion in Christopher Norris. Hitherto best known as philosopher and literary theorist, he has treated that genre to a full-scale modern revival of singular scope and ambition. His poems combine intellectual agility with a verse-music both keen-eared and frequently haunting. This latest collection sees Norris at the top of his bent as lyric poet, poet-philosopher, verse-essayist, political satirist, social commentator, and skilful re-worker of traditional verse-forms to suit contemporary contexts and concerns. It exhibits all the wit and erudition that readers will have come to expect, along with a marked broadening of purview and heightened stylistic virtuosity. These poems engage with topics ranging from the personal (though never private-confessional) to the deeply enquiring (though never abstruse) and the forcefully political (though never excluding issues that transcend the narrowly partisan). Above all they make the case for viewing rhyme, meter, and prosodic structure as intrinsically a part of verse-practice and a source of everything that is most distinctive and valuable in poetry.

Paperback ISBN: 978-1-84519-935-7
Paperback Price: £25.00 / $34.95
Release Date: July/August 2018
Page Extent / Format: 400 pp. 229 x 152 mm
Illustrated: No



The Reality of the Past: Two Views
Wintering (Sibelius)
Reflection from Gide
Night Thoughts: Shostakovich
Night Thoughts 2: July 4th 1975
Verse-Thinking: A Monorhyme
Deus Sive Natura (Spinoza)
A Listener
One Loss
Quakes: Five Sonnets
The Polly Garter Thing
Bertolt Brecht Offers Advice to Those Living in the Age of Donald Trump
Structuralism and its Discontents
Self and Soul: A Dialogue
Deryck Cooke in Cardiff
Lessons of the Master
The Great Gift of Bors J: A New Dunciad
The View from Nowhere
Two Sleepless Nights You’d Had
Note on ‘Note on Local Flora’
Stand Up Between
Icarus and the Dangler
The Jinnee in the Urn
The Intentional Fallacy: A Verse-Dialogue
A Celebration
The Rotation Method
A Point of Prosody
Notes Against a Supreme Fiction
The Provocations of Philosophy: Bert Brecht’s Message for the
Age of Trump
The Matter of Rhyme
Reckonings 1: A Remonstrance (Hardy)
Reckonings 2: A Falling-Out (Bloch to Adorno)
Reckonings 3: A Differend (Adorno to Habermas)
About Face
A Distinction
All Gone a’Moon
Off the Rails
Late Science Extra

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