Chicago Review 60:4/61:1

Chicago, IL – November 21, 2017 – The new issue of Chicago Review boasts two special sections: a dossier on international folklore and proletarian culture, and a pair of essays by two leading poet-critics on print arts, poetics, and digital culture.

Fieldworks is a rich trove of documents for readers interested in how folkloric and ethnographic thought influenced European and American intellectual culture at mid-century and after. In “We Need a Grassroots Communication System,” a manifesto delivered to the czars of public broadcasting in 1979, American folklorist Alan Lomax (1915–2002) calls for a decentralization of the postwar mass media network into a loose federation of independent, guerilla media cadres. Published for the first time here, the essay is introduced by Lomax experts Todd Harvey and Nathan Salsburg, alongside Chicago Review co-editor Andrew Peart. In “Towards a History of the Popular Subaltern World,” a 1942 polemic translated into English for the first time here, Italian folklorist Ernesto de Martino (1908–1965) outlines a strategy for the enlistment of Southern Italian folklore and folkways into Marxism’s global proletarian revolution. The essay is part of this issue’s de Martino feature, introduced by guest curator David Gutherz, supplemented by another English-language debut from de Martino, “Death in the Piazza,” and rounded out by a major essay on de Martino’s final, unfinished work from Italian historian Carlo Ginzburg.

Print Arts, Poetics & Digital Culture, this issue’s second folio, maps new terrain at the intersection of media studies and poetics, and will be a sourcebook for writers, scholars, and students alike. In “Bioautography and Carolee Schneemann’s VULVA’S MORPHIA,” poet, novelist, and critic Lisa Samuels identifies in the photo-poem of Schneemann’s artist’s book a mode of life writing that locates the thinking self deeply in the embodied self. In “Thinking the Unprintable in Contemporary Post-Digital Publishing,” poet, performance artist, and critic Sophie Seita discusses how recent projects in experimental poetry explore the interface between print and digital media to fundamentally alter what it means to innovate aesthetically at all. Both groundbreaking essays appear with lavish illustrations from contemporary artist’s books and little magazines.

This issue of Chicago Review also includes poetry by Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Priscilla Becker, Asiya Wadud, Joshua Clover, Chen Li (translated from the Chinese by Elaine Wong), and Anne Kawala (translated from the French by Kit Schluter), along with fiction by Lawrence Lenhart and Luce d’Eramo (translated from the Italian by Anne Milano Appel).

For more information on the new issue of Chicago Review, please visit


Andrew Peart, Co-Editor

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