What Work Is

ISBN-10: 0679740589
ISBN-13: 9780679740582
Edition: N/A
Authors: Philip Levine
List price: $16.95 Buy it from $4.81
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Description: Winner of the National Book Award in 1991 “This collection amounts to a hymn of praise for all the workers of America. These proletarian heroes, with names like Lonnie, Loo, Sweet Pea, and Packy, work the furnaces, forges, slag heaps, assembly  More...

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Book details

List price: $16.95
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 4/21/1992
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 96
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 0.25" tall
Weight: 0.550
Language: English

Winner of the National Book Award in 1991 “This collection amounts to a hymn of praise for all the workers of America. These proletarian heroes, with names like Lonnie, Loo, Sweet Pea, and Packy, work the furnaces, forges, slag heaps, assembly lines, and loading docks at places with unglamorous names like Brass Craft or Feinberg and Breslin’s First-Rate Plumbing and Plating. Only Studs Terkel’sWorkingapproaches the pathos and beauty of this book. But Levine’s characters are also significant for their inner lives, not merely their jobs. They are unusually artistic, living ‘at the borders of dreams.’ One readsThe Tempest‘slowly to himself’; another ponders a diagonal chalk line drawn by his teacher to suggest a triangle, the roof of a barn, or the mysterious separation of ‘the dark from the dark.’What Work Isranks as a major work by a major poet . . . very accessible and utterly American in tone and language.”—Daniel L. Guillory,Library Journal

As a poet, Levine has been preoccupied with domestic and modern urban life, loneliness, and love. His poetry is somber, reflective, and restrained; his language simple and direct. His take on the modern world is dark and unsentimental. Born in Detroit, Levine has taught writing at a number of universities, including Berkeley, Princeton, and Columbia. Levine was appointed the Library of Congress 18th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry for 2011-2012.

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