A Common Strangeness has been selected as runner-up for the Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present 2013 Book Prize. The honor recognizes A Common Strangeness as “as one of the finest works in every field of contemporary arts criticism that was published last year.” The A.S.A.P 2013 Book Prize was won by Artificial Hells: Participatory Art and the Politics of Spectatorship (Verso). My congratulations to the book’s author, Claire Bishop, on this richly deserved award.
A.S.A.P’s citation for A Common Strangeness reads:
In this remarkable book, comparative literature outdoes itself, becoming fully contemporary and transnational: Edmond innovates a genuinely global poetics that discovers the fullest cultural crossings among Chinese, Russian, and U.S. poets. Reading correspondences among Yang Lian, Arkadii Dragomoshchenko, and Lyn Hejinian, Bei Dao, Dmitri Prigov, and Charles Bernstein, among others, Edmond aims to give a field “still shaped by the history and conceptual and political structures of the Cold War” the resources to read the “appositional, transnational, and multicultural poetics of our current era”; its focus is contemporary poetry’s “common commitment to forms of strangeness,” which disallow old assertions of what unites or foreignizes the world’s populations. And its great advantage is a sense of literary culture equally powerful in its three languages, which translates to interpretive insight uniquely adequate to the world today.