Runner-up for the Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present (A.S.A.P.) 2013 Book Prize
The honor recognizes A Common Strangeness as “as one of the finest works in every field of contemporary arts criticism” published in 2012. The citation 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.
Honorable Mention for the 2013 Harry Levin Prize, American Comparative Literature Association
The 2013 Levin Prize distinguishes the best first book in comparative literature published between 2010 and 2012. The citation reads: Jacob Edmond’s work places the discipline of comparative literature against a deeply cosmopolitan, yet rarely juxtaposed, series of lyrical contexts. From the stakes of high modernism to the controversies over global literature and contemporary geopolitics, his discussions are admirable in their linguistic range, erudition, and critical vision. Cultural encounter––that experience so typically poised between strangeness and commonality––becomes here a poetic event. An original, sophisticated, and remarkable book.