Avant-Garde in Crisis

As the commodification avant-garde forms has led to a predicament for artistic innovation in the United States, this essay argues for a perspective of complexity by way of poetic frameworks based on ethics. Poets José Lezama Lima and George Oppen are cited throughout as examples for anticipating alternative histories that promise a more graceful and open-ended future. This essay rehearses a kind of border defiance that can dissolve the anxieties surrounding personal space and culture through a playfulness with image and metaphor. Tejada proposes these flourishes of personhood as development of what it means to critically inhabit citizenship.