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date: 25 February 2021

Abstract and Keywords

‘The Degree of Power Exercised’ considers one strand of the turn to ekphrasis in post-war British poetry. A close examination of individual poems by Charles Tomlinson, R. F. Langley, and Peter Riley demonstrates the ways in which these poets negotiate Pound’s visual aesthetic, and in particular its political implications, through consideration of a range of paintings. Paying particular attention to questions of the materiality of form and the role of the body of the viewer, this essay argues that recent ekphrasis contests the visual surfeit of contemporary culture through a patient and principled account of the act of looking.

Keywords: ekphrasis, modernism, poetry, painting, spectacle, subjectivity

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