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RAE 2008

Rearch Assessment Exercise 2008

Matthew Hobson

Matthew Hobson writes under the name Matthew Caley.

Research Outcomes

Outcome 1 - Pop Fiction: The Song In Cinema
Pop Fiction’s unique essays individually consider one song within a cinematic context.
Previously, the use of the pop song on compiled soundtracks had not been given serious consideration or seen only in commercial terms. The book intends to address this by offering a close examination of these two most persuasive and significant mediums in a deliberately narrowed focus. The collection introspects, assembling the pop song into various guises and documenting how individuals dissemble the multiple roles that the pop song plays in all and one audio-visual moment.


Outcome 2 - The Scene Of My Former Triumph
The poems in The Scene Of My Former Triumph address the notion that "poetry is dead", or at the very least, is not being written, out of current conditions; but still, in some pre-Modernist, never mind post-Modernist, paradigm that this inherent conservatism at its core - that Andrew Duncan attributes to a kind of middle-class depression, to being an island race - seems present even in its more lively practitioners who still argue for old ideas of "form", "honesty", "truth" and the special case for poetry.
The poems are individually and collectively born out of a Saussurean approach to the unstable link between the signifier and the signified; they parody the Romantic paradigms adopted by past and present poetics; deal with information overload, intertextuality, and explore the liminal borders between the false opposition of the urban and the pastoral - particularly between urban myth and the myth of pastoral escape.


Outcome 3 - How Dish Wing - De-Composing Philip Larkin
In this exhibition, 24 artists, writers and designers "de-compose" one poem each from Larkin's final collection, High Windows
reconstituting the entire book through a series of different procedures: the reply poem; the OULIPO-influenced tactic of taking a text’s letters and re-ordering them to create a new text; an English/Spanish/English translation using an Altavista Babel-Fish translator; the list poem; drawing; geriatric handwriting; the loose science of annagramic mis-hearing; the "rhyming" of contemporaries Larkin and Burroughs through the "cut-up" technique - all manner of merger and hybridity across disparate and "different" practices.
Thus the exhibition becomes a critical engagement with the work of Philip Larkin -both as individual poet and symbol of English poetry’s failure to engage with Modernist, never mind post-Modernist conditions.


Outcome 4 - No Bulwark (in The Earth Has Not Anything To Shew More Faire: A Bicentenary Celebration of Wordsworth’s sonnet Composed Upon Westminster Bridge.)
As these commissions wanted to match contemporary poetry against Wordsworth’s patriotic rhetoric and Romantic vision, the poem No Bulwark was intentionally deflationary, utilising two down-and-outs/crackheads as a "greek chorus"to comment on the detritus of their urban environment; a detritus which includes reference to the Americanisation of culture. Wordsworth’s Romantic inflatus is matched/replaced by a drug comedown (post-Romantic deflation) and economic reality.


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