Chapter 2. Veronica Forrest-Thomson: Poetic Artifice and Naturalization in Theory and Practice
Forrest-Thomson’s Poetic Artifice is explored, both as a theory of poetry, which emphasizes form, artifice and processes of good and bad naturalization, and as a poetics for her own poetry. While her terms are treated as useful tools in attempting to show how artifice can critique the world, her concepts of the ‘image-complex’ and ‘suspended naturalization’, and her insistence that artifice is ‘non-meaningful’, are found wanting. The semiotics of Yuri Lotman and the thinking of Charles Bernstein rescue these terms, but not enough to stop Forrest-Thomson’s forensic analysis of her own poetry demonstrating the impossibility of fusing theory with poetics, even though she throughout maintains the primacy of artifice.
Explore the thinking behind the book here (though there is only a little on VF-T). There is a response to the republication of Poetic Artifice here, and a creative response to her poetry and poetics here.
For those who can buy the book, or order it for libraries, here are the places