January 3, 2022

Like the cosmologies of Blake and Dante or archaic creation lore, The Descent of Alette is a fully embodied universe, with its own terrain and. The Descent of Alette (Penguin Poets) [Alice Notley] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The Decent Of Alette is a rich odyssey of. Not the least of Alice Notley’s acute dilemmas in writing The Descent of Alette is an extreme crisis of form: the crisis of how to take on what Notley deems to be a.

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It would be inevitable that the weight of story-lines, motivations and ambitions would have to leave one restless in the end. The mansion of the Tyrant was another great juxtaposition to the horror of the underground and the rest of the world. May 26, Liza Pittard rated it it was amazing Shelves: The epic is dripping with metaphors, some more blatant than others, about the evils of patriarchy and the sin man has committed to nature represented by a headless woman.

Notley’s alettte is a mythic epic, following as many reviewers have noted Joseph Campbell’s heroic journey. For metaphor junkies, it can provide hours of stimulating and thought provoking analysis.

Alice Notley’s ‘The Descent of Alette’

Read more on the booklog. There are many lines that are worth remembering from this book and images to pay attention to, and I applaud the author for writing such sensational poetry. In poems I was inside a subway wending through snake innards. Sep 22, preoccu rated it liked it Shelves: It is ultimately the natural which succeeds, alete defeats the tyrant, and within nature is both a genderlessness and an equality of gender that speaks to the importance of the female as a separate entity as well as a ubiquitous force necessary for life.


As with any epic, especially those written in lyric, all things operate on two levels of meaning. Because of that, rereading a passage several times became a typical thing.

The Descent of Alette

Using a new measure, with rhythmic units indicated by quotation marks, Notley has created descnt “spoken” text, a rich and mesmerizing work of imagination, mystery, and power. To ask other readers questions about The Descent of Aletteplease sign up. For an interview with Notley: Oct 25, Keight rated it really liked it Shelves: Nov 15, Leslie added it.

This book was a lot like laser tag. In “The Descent of Alette,” Alice Notley presents a feminist epic, a bold journey into the off realms.

It lasts only page or so and the nature of their struggle betrays the bombastic creativity that precedes it. When the showdown comes, there is little to throw a fuss about. Yet the absurd has its roots in a radical, even violent, dislocation from perceived reality; beneath it stretches a terrifying abyss.

I’m not big on feminism, which is another big reason why I probably had some struggles, and a partially bitter relationship, with the book. Don’t allow anyone to ruin it for you, as most Notley fans can’t help themselves but to blab about what and how this book unfolds.

‘I see’ ‘with my voice’:

Jan 23, Keith rated it liked it. The truth is that there may be an answer to the question, “Why does it need to be this way?

I consider the idea that the grandiosity of the epic makes for inevitable let downs. I spent my reading sleuthing what that moral might be and whether or not I could get behind it. When I consider this book as a single work aletye a novel, I am left with mixed feelings.


Nothing you ever read by any “post-modern” poet could ever prepare you for this one.

I navigated the strobe lit rooms like a disoriented grandmother, spending half my time dazzled by the alien autopsy disco room and the other half crab walking down ramps to avoid slips and rug burns.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Other people have loved the book before me and see it as perfection, so it is really a mater of taste, priorities, and comfort zone. Various theories have been advanced as to whether this was a form of ritualized prostitution or whether these women actually were, in fact, high priestesses.

There is a sense here of playacting with mythology, of a wandering exploration of a surreal world alettf is at times dense with meaning, and at other times simply associative, experimental, and dreamlike.

The Descent of Alette [“I walked into”] by Alice Notley – Poems |

The persistent use of quotation marks to delineate rhythm was Refresh and try again. But navigating the structure of the text is paralleled — even dwarfed — by the navigation of the story, and of the story-world. The Descent of Alette by Alice Notley.