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The Poethical Wager


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Table of Contents

Introduction: Essay as Wager The Poethical Wager Wager as Essay Blue Notes on the Know Ledge Poethics of the Improbable: Rosmarie Waldrop and the Uses of Form The Experimental Feminine The Scarlet Aitch: Twenty-Six Notes on the Experimental Feminine :RE:THINKING:LITERARY:FEMINISM: (three essays onto shaky grounds) The Difficulties of Gertrude Stein, I & II FOUR ON JOHN CAGE Geometries of Attention Fig. 1, Ground Zero, Fig. 2: John Cage--May 18, 2005 Poethics of a Complex Realism Uncaged Words: John Cage in Dialogue with Chance Notes Bibliography Acknowledgments and Permissions Index

About the Author

Joan Retallack is John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Professor of Humanities at Bard College. She is author of How to Do Things with Words (1998), Musicage: Cage Muses on Words Art Music (1996), Afterrimages (1995), and Errata 5uite (1993), among other books.


"In this very coherent collection of essays, Retallack goes a long way toward constructing meaning out of the restlessness and anxiety that characterize postmodern art. The result is a strong affirmation of the imagination--and, in way, an affirmation of affirmation itself. The book is powerful and beautiful."

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