Theories of versification in and after modernism transform the linguistic disabilities of an abstractly neurodivergent body-mind into poetry and criticism’s aesthetic capacity. Through a sublime encounter with speech and motor pathology — Tourette’s in particular — poetry criticism lyricizes disability. Such lyric readings are destabilized, however, by the paradoxical volition and gestural economy of their model Tourettic subject.
Ben Glaser's research focuses on the history and practice of prosody, especially in relation to modern poetry. His book Modernism’s Metronome (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2020) explores debates over prosody from the late 19th century through the 1930s, focusing on the rejection but also afterlife of traditional meter and practices of scansion. He also co-edited, with Jonathan Culler, Critical Rhythm (Fordham University Press, 2019), a collection of essays developing new approaches to the study of poetic rhythm.
He is excited to be helping develop the Princeton Prosody Archive (1750-1923), an innovative digital collection of over 10,000 texts concerning historical poetics and prosody. The archive will help scholars develop new research projects in poorly recognized but historically central discourses of prosody.