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Cultural Studies
Kevin González



Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series

Carnegie Mellon
2009 • 96 pp. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2"
Poetry / Poetry - American

$15.95 Paperback, 978-0-88748-493-3



The debut collection of poetry by Kevin González.

From the back streets of Pittsburgh to the bars and byways of Puerto Rico, Cultural Studies explores the inner workings of a narrator at once resistant to the trappings of culture and embracing of its idiosyncrasies. Blending traditional forms with content in unexpected ways, these are poems that show a tough exterior as well as the vulnerability beneath the front, that feed off their apparent hypocrisy while casting it in the lead role. Ultimately, they are poems that build truths by amassing contradictions, whipping us along on engaging rhythmic journeys that often wind up—surprisingly—back where they began.

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Reviews / Endorsements



"Explosive . . . González articulates the political in a completely unexpected way. [His] cultural mediations range from humorous to ironic, nostalgic to angry, creating a truly unique narrative voice."—Rain Taxi

"Not only are these poems about a voraciously lived life, there is vibrant life throbbing in them. With expansive grandeur and Whitmanian proclamations, Cultural Studies rides a cultural mélange with a channel-surfer’s brio, a surrealist’s hellbent imagination and a realist’s vivid fidelity to the facts: “The shriek of a thousand mongooses / giving birth to a thousand mongooses” indeed. The humor is ferocious as a good slap in the face, the voice beguiling as bouquet after bouquet blown apart by wild velocity, the heart as large as a mansion on fire."—Dean Young

"Kevin González writes an athletic poetry, agile enough to sculpt lyrical sonnets and muscular enough to tame expansive spills of narrative. He has that rare ability to be sincere even in his irony, vulnerable even in his bravado. 'Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee': that feels suitable here. His poems possess that kind of wicked charm and potency, that kind of weaving, slippery grace."—Terrance Hayes



KEVIN GONZALEZ was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He holds degrees from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he was also a Carol Houck Smith Fellow in Fiction. His poems and stories have appeared in Playboy, The Progressive, Virginia Quarterly Review, Poetry and McSweeney’s, as well as in two editions of Best New American Voices and Best American Nonrequired Reading. He currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin.



Wed, 15 Nov 2017 13:36:37 -0500