Christian Wiman, professor of the practice of religion and literature
(Yale University Press)
Christian Wiman, a poet known for his meditations on mortality, has long been fascinated by joy and by its relative absence in modern literature. Why is joy so resistant to language, he asks? How has it become so suspect in our times? Manipulated by advertisers, religious leaders, and politicians, joy can seem disquieting, even offensive, he contends. How does one speak of joy amid such ubiquitous injustice and suffering in the world?
In this anthology, he takes readers on a journey through some of the most underexplored terrain in contemporary life. Rather than define joy for readers, he wants them to experience it. Poets in the book range from Emily Dickinson to Mahmoud Darwish and from Sylvia Plath to Wendell Berry.