Studying Hunger Journals by Bernadette Mayer- Station Hill Press, 2011
Jonathan Skinner- Mayer's Walden
Two or three strange convergences: one, that I obtained my copy of Bernadette Mayer's masterful Studying Hunger Journals on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, and after I've been focussing for several weeks here on the frightening famine in Somalia, and also on the same day that I obtained Pierre Joris' astounding translation of Paul Celan's "The Meridian: Speech on the Occasion of receiving the George Buchner prize, October 22, 1960".
It is well worth reading Skinner's enthusiastic paper. For me, Bernadette Mayer's book Studying Hunger published in 1975 is a landmark in my appreciation and understanding of what is possible in the realm of the poetic study of consciousness, as was her previous book Moving, published by Angel Hair in 1971. Even though the books were 30 pages and 71 pages long respectively, I thought of them as epic in scope. However, I had no idea that the Studying Hunger Journals was literally an epic at 456 pages long. I am baffled, and in a sense, sorrowful that such an important book took so long to be published, but at least now it is available as is the author to be around to see it in the world, and to be asked about it and see it discussed. I am excitedly looking forward to reading it closely, and hopefully reporting back here as to my thoughts about this amazing, this crucial and most important literary contribution.
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"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves."
— Edward R. Murrow
Blowback and US Government Policy in Somalia
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Somalia's worsening famine - NY Times editorial 9/12/11
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Turkish delegation visits Mogadishu, Somalia