Trim: 6½ x 9¼
978-0-7391-8412-7 • Hardback • October 2014 • $142.00 • (£109.00)
978-0-7391-8413-4 • eBook • October 2014 • $128.00 • (£98.00)
Esther Cameron is an independent scholar, poet, and translator who has published numerous articles on Paul Celan and on contemporary poetics.
Introduction: The Landscape of Reading
Part I: Idolatry, Determinism, and Freedom
Part II: Lenz, the Exodic Moment, and the Pathway of Art
Part III: The Poem’s Quest for the (Wholly) Other
Part IV: Toward the Circumference
Part V: Post Meridian
Esther Cameron brings a novel and genuine aspect to the exhaustive enumeration of Celan's legacy and Celanian literature: a deeply human and personal one. . . .Cameron's book will be of great guiding value to anyone aspiring to understand Paul Celan's poetry and an insightful literary lesson to anyone reading the giants of German, and to a degree, American literature of the pre- and post-Celan writings.
— H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online
[For Cameron], Celan’s poetry was a path, a way to engage her own existential dilemmas. He was, in short, a poet who changed her life, and this book is her witness. . . .Cameron’s book is an exhaustive analysis and commentary on [Celan’s Georg Buchner prize acceptance] speech: each word, each reference, its themes and allusions, what is said and what is not said. She views this speech not only as a key to Celan’s entire life and oeuvre, but also to the past and future possible relations of contemporary Western and Jewish culture. Her reading of it is passionate, intellectual, religious, poetic, academic, and personal all at once. The exacting, exhaustive word-by-word commentary parallels traditional rabbinic literary modes of interpretation. In an autobiographical note, Cameron writes that her father was a geologist, and there is indeed something geological in her method here as well in the way she lifts and scrapes every fragment, digging slowly and patiently from layer to layer, trying to decipher and put patterns and structures together, probing the crevices. . . .The book is part of her own stated project to create a voice and community responsive to the needs of the contemporary Jewish artistic soul.
— B'Or Ha'Torah
Esther Cameron's book is a comprehensive, sensitive, and insightful commentary on one of the most significant and far-reaching poetic manifestos of the modern era. It will be illuminating to both the novice and the seasoned Celan reader, as well as anyone interested in the place and potential of the Jewish tradition in the modern world.
— Michael Eskin, Cofounder and Publisher, Upper West Side Philosophers, Inc.
Esther Cameron’s exquisitely written book offers a highly original and compelling meditation on the lyric and thought of one of the greatest poets of our time.
— Amir Eshel, Stanford University