Considers allegory as a catalyst of transformative thinking
Allegorical Moments is a set of essays dedicated to rethinking allegory and arguing for its significance as a creative and critical response to sociopolitical, environmental, and existential turmoil affecting the contemporary world. Traditionally, allegorical interpretation was intended to express an orthodoxy and support an ideology. Hejinian attempts to liberate allegory from its dogmatic usages. Presenting modern and contemporary materials ranging from the novel to poetry to painting and cinema to activist poetry of the Occupy movement, each essay in the book "begins again" with different materials and from different perspectives. Hejinian's generative scholarship looks back to experimental modernism and forward into a future for a vital, wayward poetry resistant to the crushing global effects of neoliberalism.
Introduction • The Good Life of Lucy Church Amiably • "Dear Sophia": The Intimate Excess of Philosophy • Prelude to the Curious • Mineral Freedom • What's Missing from My Life • Figuring Out • The Shown • The Sneeze • The Sad Note in a Poetics of Consciousness • Wild Captioning • Acknowledgements • Index
"A captivating and daunting work of criticism and theory in aesthetic activism. The writing, and the thinking behind it is, beautiful, coruscating, and ethically compelling. This book will raise your IQ about life, and not just about literature. A breathtaking achievement."~James I. Porter, Stone Professor in Literature at the University of California, Berkeley
"Hejinian delights in the obduracy of existence—Oppen's 'mineral fact.' Without abridging this otherness, she reveals it as the dialectical complement of her own and her authors' acts of interpretive intelligence. We get it all: 'the stuff of life' (Woolf) and the life—the relational principle, jostling contexts, particularizing contingencies—of stuff. Call to the Everyday = How to Begin Again and Again (Stein)."~Marjorie Levinson, author of Thinking through Poetry: Field Reports on Romantic Lyric