Daniel Tobin, former Interim Dean of the School of the Arts at Emerson, has published a new book, Awake in America: On Irish American Poetry (University of Notre Dame Press). The book examines Irish American culture through its poets.
Awake in America is the first comprehensive study of Irish American poetry ever published. In it, Tobin seeks to establish a conversation between Irish and Irish American literature that challenges many of the long-accepted boundaries between the two, by presenting a series of essays that combine poetry and literary criticism to form what he calls “the poet’s essay.”
Joseph Lennon, director of the Irish studies program at Villanova calls it “an incisive and moving critique of poetry and tradition that pushes the frontiers of Irish studies.”
The first section of Awake in America reconsiders the dual tradition of Irish poetry through discussions of 19th- and 20th-century poets as well as contemporary writers. The second section features a series of shorter chapters on poets in America. The third section explores the theme of “Crossings” and includes a consideration of Irish American and African American literature. The fourth, and final, section consists of a compositional memoir in which Tobin explores the role of hidden history in his own long poem, The Narrows.
Tobin is the author and editor of a number of books about poetry and poetry collections, including The Book of Irish American Poetry from the Eighteenth Century to the Present.