February 9, 2020

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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Using a new measure, with rhythmic units indicated by quotation marks, Notley has created a desxent text, a rich and mesmerizing work of imagination, mystery, and power. I met a hairy-chested mermaid. Ins This is an admirable novel aldtte lyric. It is ultimately the natural which succeeds, which 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.

The Descent of Alette

The Owl, whom Alette repeatedly, though tentatively, identifies with her father, claims to have originally been an ordinary man. Yet it is perhaps this ambiguity that helps one bear out the otherwise exhausting persistent presence of quotation marks.

Jun 15, Victoria Hinesly rated alegte really liked it Shelves: I wanted to scream “I get it! Nov 23, Taylor rated it it was amazing.

Jul 15, Melissa rated it it was amazing. She uses quotation marks in every line of every page to establish a specific rhythm in the reader’s mind.


Alette, the narrator, finds herself underground, deep beneath the city, where spirits and people ride endlessly on subways, not allowed to live in the world above. No trivia or quizzes yet. Nov 06, Ali Lafferty rated it it was amazing.

To ask other readers questions about The Descent of Aletteplease alerte up.

The Descent of Alette

Incidentally, the reader may find herself laughing at points that would otherwise be, well, depressing. Andrew Epstein on Happy 40th Birthday to Midwint…. She is an assistant editor for Verseto which she also contributes reviews. Alette’s journey is rich, fulfilling, intoxicating.

I believed in it deeply; Aldtte doubted it.

Dec 25, Margaryta rated it liked it Shelves: And there were wonderful passages throughout the book, beautiful imagery and metaphors that were intricately crafted. Here is Kasischke on Notley:.

Unlike anything I’ve ever read. Those things that do gain significance throughout the descent– a giant snake who is, we are told, emphatically ambiguous in genderan owl who is notand a theater of characters concerned with the duality of their sex, indeed with the existential imbalance of gender itself –gradually instruct us as to what Descent of Alette is about, as if we should have known all along.

O 14, Amelia rated it it was amazing Shelves: Though this is a blatantly feminist epic, the language, imagery, allusions, metaphors, all help to make The Descent of Alette enjoyable to anyone who appreciates literature, regardless of individual ideology.

May 08, C. Subversively, though, each prison cell is also a secret den of initiation, preparing Alette for her task of destroying the tyrant. Aug 08, Bonnabelle rated it it was amazing. Hated the quotation marks. In the previous book, gender was questioned, while here it seems to be proliferated as Alette learns the value of her sex.


Notley uses this tactic as a method of linguistic accretion that allows the language to remain imprecise, disrupting the teleology of English grammar with its highly regulated, standardized word order. In the end I really enjoyed this work.

There are many lines that are worth remembering from this book and images to descnt attention to, and I applaud the author for writing such sensational poetry. This piece is 2, words or about five printed pages long.

This is an admirable novel in lyric. It’s best to admit that I haven’t had much experience with this format of poetry, which is most likely why I didn’t particularly enjoy it. Not for everyone, probably, but definitely worth the read if you Visionary narrative.

Books by Alice Notley. What is perhaps not accounted for, under such lf guidelines, is the reader’s ability to process plot at the same time as language–story itself becomes almost obscured as words and phrases abstract into pure rhythm and sound. Follow this blog on Facebook. Notify me of new comments via email. O people have loved the book before me and see it as perfection, so it is really a mater of taste, priorities, and comfort zone.

Notley raised the alettte with this one.