August 22, 2006

A Paper to be Written on L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets and the Marx Brothers

The idea of this paper is to use the L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets as a kind of frame through which to view the specific play of language in the Marx Brothers’ scripts and it is particularly useful since there is a certain influence on L=A=N=G=U=G=E poets, especially Bernstein, whom I would focus on the most. Bernstein uses the Marx Brothers on certain courses that he teaches at SUNY Buffalo. He also uses the figure of Chico in his essay ‘Comedy and the Poetics of Political Form’ and in interview, he writes of his admiration for Groucho’s ‘awkwardness’ stating that poetry is ‘about awkwardness’. Michael Barrett writes that Bernstein ‘does what Artaud praised the Marx Brothers for – disruption through humour. He takes culture through a “comic spin cycle” introducing the chaos of laughter into the orderworn “necroid ideocracy” ’. My reading emerges from a detailed study of influence and technique.

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