Baltic accent

2024 Vol. 15 №2

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“The Voice of Hotness from the Margins”. On the interaction of poetry and politics



In contemporary critical literature, there are various perspectives on the relationship be­tween the political and the poetic. Some view poetry as a form of politics, encapsulated in the aphorism ‘the word is a weapon’, while others argue that politics itself should embody the qualities of poetry, as suggested by Andy Merrifield's assertion that "politics should be like poetry." This article seeks to explore the poetic dimensions that underpin the political necessi­ty for poetry, namely, the attributes of poetry that establish a connection with the political sphere. The focus of this exploration is the concept of poetic defamiliarization and its interac­tion with the political within Jacques Rancière's theoretical framework. Rancière posits that the political function of poetry, and art more broadly, lies in its ability to disrupt the estab­lished order of sensory perception, challenging the prevailing system of unquestioned percep­tual facts. This disruptive quality of poetry contrasts with what has been termed "police aes­thetics" by Vatulescu, which reflects the conformity and uniformity inherent in consumer society. The article contends that, within the contemporary cultural landscape, the transform­ative potential of poetic expression risks being co-opted by aestheticizing practices prevalent in consumer culture. As a result, the subversive nature of poetic utterance is somewhat dilut­ed, as it becomes assimilated into commodifying forces. However, the article also suggests that poetry retains the capacity to resist such commodification by transcending the limitations imposed by conventional boundaries, thereby offering a means of resisting capture by com­mercial interests


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