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Poetry as the "great unsettler"

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Tuesday, 13 Dec 2011, 10:34

I admire her principles in refusing the prize but I also like her points that "poetry is the great unsettler. It questions the established order of the mind. It is radical, by which I don't mean that it is either leftwing or rightwing, but that it works at the roots of thinking. It goes lower than rhetoric, lower than conversation, lower than logic, right down to the very faint honest voice at the bottom of the skull."


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Hi Patrick..oh..totally agree..like music..'One good thing about muisc..when it hits you feel no pain'-Bob Marley..Poetry hits as hard as Music or good art..sends the mind into universes unexplored..brilliant..Hope your well..Anthony  

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To me, the Marley quote seems to suggest a soothing role but some of the others (eg "Lively Up Yourself") seem to be advocating the unsettling role.

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hi patrick..I thinkI meant it goes straight to the soul..like poetry..words we would never normally speak aloud in conversation..Unsettling..ideas that change your world..Bob marley..'War' or Dylan(Bob)-'Gates of Eden' or Lautremont's poetry..very unsettling...be well..Anthony.

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I think the examples you give are good ones.  Have you read anything by or about the Russian formalists, who argue that literature should make the familiar strange?