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Recommendation: Tangling with the Epic

Written by Sandeep Parmar for Poetry Book Society, Winter Bulletin, 2019 on Friday, January 10, 2020

As a vehicle for the building of nation-myths, the epic reigns supreme across the globe and its ancient formal variations (and modern equivalents), make it worthy of critique and, perhaps in this case, inhabitation. Spenser’s Faerie Queene this is not, but what we have here in place of allegory and chivalry is a sense of the pastoral and moral authority of man and nature. Trump looms large, colonialism, too. This conversation is a working out of national mythologies – it is tangling with, as much as it is untangling, the epic proportions of Australian and American nativism. Sometimes this happens with directness, elsewhere the pastoral speaks encoded within the mind of the observer who knows the landscape intimately.

This is a review of Tangling With The Epic

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