So Much Depends Upon / Enjambment: A Short Study in Indeterminacy, Recursion, and Penumbral Poetics

Lauridsen, Nicholas, English - Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Virginia
McGann, Jerome, English, UVA

Enjambment, the carrying over of a sentence from one line of verse to the next, is generally understood to be critical to the practice of free verse but is rarely studied in general terms. This thesis attempts to theorize some properties of enjambment, especially as arising out of the verse practice of William Carlos Williams and Louise Glück. As a sort of seminal “field guide” to types of enjambment, this thesis proposes three species at work in modern poetry: enjambment that creates a deliberate cognitive blank, which organizes poetic figuration and compels the reader into the poem; enjambment that creates recursion, which effects a non-linearity within verse and makes the line self-referential; and enjambment that creates its own linguistic tense, which is realized as a shift in the temporality of the poem.

MA (Master of Arts)
Enjambment, Louise Glück, William Carlos Williams
Issued Date: