Live Poetry: An Integrated Approach to Poetry in Performance

Given the increasing popularity of literary festivals, open mics, and poetry slams, one could justifiably claim that the English-speaking world is currently experiencing a Live Poetry boom. Yet, despite this raised awareness for the aesthetic and social potential of performed poetry, academia has barely responded, failing in the process to update and adapt its concept of poetry to meet these recent developments.

Bridging this critical gap, this volume provides for the first time a full methodological toolkit for the analysis of live poetry by drawing together approaches from diverse disciplines concerned with speech and forms of cultural performance. Most notably, these include literary studies, paralinguistics, musicology, kinesics, theatre and performance studies, and folklore studies.

This innovative methodology is demonstrated through sample analyses based on a mixed corpus of audio and video recordings of poetry performances, as well as on personal interviews with practitioners of live poetry. Of value to the scholar and poetry enthusiast alike, this volume presents an indispensable guide for anyone interested in understanding and analysing poetry’s evolution through its current spoken word renaissance.

Where to order…

Live poetry can be ordered directly from the publishers Rodopi, or on amazon.

Table of contents


Julia Lajta-Novak
Institut für Anglistik & Amerikanistik, Universität Wien
Universitätscampus AAKH, Hof 8, Spitalgasse 2-4,
A-1090 Wien, AUSTRIA.