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Poetry Slam: The Competitive Art of Performance Poetry Paperback – September 30, 2000


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Poetry Slam: The Competitive Art of Performance Poetry + Take the Mic: The Art of Performance Poetry, Slam, and the Spoken Word (A Poetry Speaks Experience) + The Spoken Word Revolution: Slam, Hip Hop & the Poetry of a New Generation (A Poetry Speaks Experience)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 237 pages
  • Publisher: Manic D Press, Inc.; 1st edition (September 30, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0916397661
  • ISBN-13: 978-0916397661
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #487,939 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

"Poems ask only that they be heard, which is the purpose of the slam," Bob Holman says. It has been ten years since Glazner produced the first National Poetry Slam (perhaps best described as a competitive reading), but many poetry enthusiasts remain virtually unaware of the phenomenon. This volume collects an assortment of slam poems and articles about the slams (setting up, judging, becoming participants, and group pieces). Some articles, such as Lisa Martinovic on using props or Daniel S. Solis on slam aesthetics and strategy, are elemental but extremely useful, while Patricia Smith's brilliant piece on persona poetry adds little to the concept of the slam. Adding to the confusion is the growth of the audience for slams and the broadening of their scope to include many poets published by the academy. Are these the same poets whose poems work perfectly well on the page and would not readily be labeled "performance" poetry? Contributors' notes would have been useful. "Good slamming starts with good writing," Solis states, although at times the material here seems closer to stand-up comedy. It's not perfect, but, considering how sparse slam literature is, this book should prove an asset to all poetry collections.DRochelle Ratner, formerly with "Soho Weekly News," New York
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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See all 12 customer reviews
PS - I love the cover, too!
Amy Helfinger
Unfortunately, many voices are left out precisely because they are no longer involved in the scene which weakens the collection's importance as an historical document.
Guy L. Gonzalez
One of the most accesible books around for anyone even remotely interested in poetry.
Scott Woods

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Scott Woods on August 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
One of the most accesible books around for anyone even remotely interested in poetry. If you've never been to an open mic or a slam, give this one a whirl...it'll make you want to go (and maybe even slip a poem in your pocket before you lock the door). If you've been to an open mic and wondered what else was out there that was like what you just saw, this book captures a great many of those elements for you.
Not just a book of poems, throughout the work are placed a great many essays written by long-time, well-known National slam poets (Taylor Mali, Danny Solis, etc.) about nearly every aspect of reading and performing one's work...a long-overdue codification of information for performing poets at ANY level.
Some of the poems contained within are national favorites, a few legend, but they ALL contain a lesson about performance poetry: that it starts on the page.
A MUST have for any poet who is (or is considering) performing their poetry before audiences in any capacity. A necessary bit of packing for any poet with national aspirations of slamming, touring or just reading.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gabrielle Bouliane on August 17, 2000
Format: Paperback
Gary Glazner has accomplished something unprecedented with this collection -- he has produced the first national-level anthology archiving the Poetry Slam as its own form, in a book by, for, and about the participants. As such, it has many of the aspects of Slam itself. The voices in both the poetry and the accompanying essays are diverse and passionate, representing all ages, races, genders and geography that this Poetry Nation has to offer. For anyone interested in learning more or starting their own Poetry Slam, this is a terrific jumpstart, as well as a great collection of favorites for poets and audience members.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Guy L. Gonzalez on December 11, 2000
Format: Paperback
3.5 stars, really. This anthology is a solid collection representing a wide range of voices STILL involved in the National Poetry Slam scene. Unfortunately, many voices are left out precisely because they are no longer involved in the scene which weakens the collection's importance as an historical document. Nevertheless, the poetry selected, along with the mixed bag of essays, makes this an invaluable supplement to ALOUD, still the king of "poetry slam" anthologies.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Amy Helfinger on August 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
If you've never been to a poetry slam and wonder what all the fuss is about then check out this book! The poetry is great and really strong, the reader can almost hear the voices coming off the page - and the book has essays too which explain the rules and the history and how to start a slam, and travel stories and weird esoteric strategies. This book has a lot in it, not just poems. If you're a poetry slam expert, well then you should write your own book, but if you're like me (just an average poetry-lovin', book-readin' kinda gal) there's stuff in here that's great. Highly recommended!!! PS - I love the cover, too!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By here... on August 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Poetry Slam: The Competitive Art of Performance Poetry Edited by Gary Mex Glazner Maniac D Press
Poetry Slam is a collage of poems and essays from the contemporary poets of the Slam scene. This book fills a void in the Slam, the print edition of several top-rate performance poems. Among the best poems this anthology has to offer are Reggie Gibson (Chicago) Eulogy of Jimi Christ, Roger-Bonair-Agard (New York/Trinidad) ...Naming and Other Christian Things, and Lisa Buscani (Boston) Barefoot in the City. All three poems make the transformation from stage to page successfully. Likewise, funnier pieces by Beau Sia and Big Poppa E are very entertaining. And a rare treasure can be found in Dan Ferri's Head to Head Haiku. What was disappointing, however, was an area that should have been a strength, the essays. Editor Glazner has done a decent job collecting pieces (although the oversight of a Slam memoir by founder Marc Smith is glaringly absent) but his overall editing and his own written piece is lacking. His introduction essay discounts the true upbringings of the poetry Slam, it doesn't answer why the Slam was started. Instead, it offers a sophomoric attempt to create lineage with "accepted" literary devices of the Western literary cannon, the very thing that the Slam rebelled against to begin. And the connections to "Howl" poet Allen Ginsberg, a now dead member of the 1950's Beat Generation? Get over it! Ginsberg is not Slam, Slam is not Beat, and Beat is not Slam! The attempts to connect Jack Kerouac's Beat Generation and Marc Smith's Slam Poetry world are little more than media fodder. So please, stop with the Ginsberg name-dropping!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 19, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had this book years ago and loaned it out. I am so happy that I got a great used copy (that looks like brand new) so I can enjoy some great poems, like "Superman in the Nursing Home"
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