CAHSS Faculty Articles

Title

Reviewed Work: Talking Dirty to the Gods by Yusef Komunyakaa

Department

Department of Literature and Modern Languages

Publication Date

Summer 2001

Publication Title

World Literature Today

ISSN

0196-3570

Volume

75

Issue/No.

3/4

First Page

153

Last Page

153

Abstract

Talking Dirty to the Gods is poet Yusef Komunyakaa's twelfth book, and it follows an illustrious sequence of publications that include his Pulitzer Prize-winning collection Neon Vernacular. Born in Bogalusa, Louisiana in 1947, Komunyakaa writes verse which pulsates with the rich folklore and mystery that attended his childhood in the South, and the collection is suffused in ancient mythology, especially incorporating gods from the Greek pantheon. Talking Dirty to the Gods consists of 132 four-quatrain poems that ' destabilize traditional Western notions regarding the nature of the divine. Through retelling myths and recontextualizing various aspects of human existence, Komunyakaa situates God in the mundane interstices of our life while concomitantly defiling sacrosanct imaginings of the divine.

Peer Reviewed

Find in your library

Share

COinS