The Library of Congress > Linked Data Service > LC Subject Headings (LCSH)

Sound poetry


  • Here are entered poems that are meant to be performed that emphasize sounds instead of semantics for their meaning. Works on poems that are meant to be performed and that are heavily stressed, metrically regular, and are characterized by improvisation, free association, and word play are entered under [Spoken word poetry.]
  • URI(s)

  • Variants

    • Phonetic poetry
    • Poesie sonore
    • Sonorist rhythms (Poetry)
    • Sound poems
  • Broader Terms

  • Narrower Terms

  • Closely Matching Concepts from Other Schemes

  • Sources

    • found: Myers, J. Dictionary of poetic terms, c2003(sound poems: poems that depend on the element of sound for the major portion of their meaning. The genre includes abstract poetry, nonsense verse, trans-sense verse, and the device of amphigory)
    • found: The Princeton encyclopedia of poetry and poetics, c2012(Sound poetry (also "sonorist rhythms," "phonetic poetry," or poesie sonore); multiplies, reduces, or denies semantic reference while amplifying the phonetic and aural properties of language; some sound poems attempt to generate natural signifying relationships between sound and meaning through phonetic symbolism; others use sound as antagonistic or indifferent toward meaning)
    • found: Wikipedia, Nov. 15, 2012:Sound poetry (Sound poetry is an artistic form bridging between literary and musical composition, in which the phonetic aspects of human speech are foregrounded instead of more conventional semantic and syntactic values; "verse without words". By definition, sound poetry is intended primarily for performance.) Spoken word (Spoken word is a form of poetry that often uses alliterated prose or verse and occasionally uses metered verse to express social commentary. Traditionally it is in the first person, is from the poet's point of view and is themed in current events. In entertainment, spoken word performances generally consist of storytelling or poetry, exemplified by people like Hedwig Gorski, Gil Scott Heron and the lengthy monologues by Spalding Gray.)
    • found: Sound poetry : an introduction and development, via WWW, Nov. 15, 2012(Sound Poetry has through decades becoming a contemporary art phenomenon--some says that sound poetry is the most exclusive of exclusive art form. It is sometimes argued that the roots of sounds poetry are to be found in oral tradition, the writing of pure sound text that downplay the rules of meaning and structure. In sound poetry the conventional hierarchy between sound sense and semantic sense is modulated and often reversed. The semantic sense does not necessarily have to be completely neglected but it assumes a more democratic role with the addition of any element that can be vocalized. Therefore, Sound poetry is a form of literary or musical composition in which the phonetic aspects of human speech are foregrounded at the expense of more conventional semantic and syntactic values; "verse without words". By definition, sound poetry is intended primarily for performance. Other definitions come from Sten Hanson, he described sound poetry as a combination of the exactness of literature and the time manipulation of music. These are the five relatively modern classes of sound poetry: 1. works in an invented language, 2. near-nonsense works, 3. phatic poems, 4. un-written-out poems, and 5. notated ones. Obviously some of the modern works being generated today still fall within the three classes I described earlier in older sound poetry: 1. folk varieties, 2. onomatopoetic or mimetic pieces, and 3. nonsense poetries which trope their own languages The early examples of sound poetry are Hans Arp (1887-1966) with his automatically poetry, Raoul Haussman (1886-1971) with his montagned verse, Pierre Albert Birrot (1876-1967), with his poem for shouting and dancing, and F.T Marinetti's "Zang Tumb Tumb" (1914) Later prominent sound poets include Henri Chopin, Bob Cobbing and Ada Verdun Howell.)
    • found: Image sound text website, Nov. 15, 2012:Sound poetry > Overview (Sound poetry uses the effect of words and how they sound to create an imagination of the readers mind, for example "Slithery Snake Slid Slowly" the sound effects from the repetition of "S" creates a picture of a snake sliding along in the reader's mind. According to Phidepho "sound poetry is a poem where sounds of any species (phonetic, bodily noises, especially from a vocal tract, noises of natural or artificial origin, daily life auditory elements), are put together, formally related to each other, constructing a whole meaning or sense of the poem to be understood by the audience." "Considering sound poetry, where words may lose their so-called meaning or new words be created at random, the question arises as to what line can be drawn between music and poetry, with specific reference to the music of composers like John Cage who construct symphonies from juxtaposed sounds. The answer is that there is no such line. The lines separating music and poetry, writing and painting, are purely arbitrary, and sound poetry is precisely designed to break down these categories and to free poetry from the printed page without dogmatically ruling out the convenience of the printed page"--William Burroughs.)
  • General Notes

    • Here are entered poems that are meant to be performed that emphasize sounds instead of semantics for their meaning. Works on poems that are meant to be performed and that are heavily stressed, metrically regular, and are characterized by improvisation, free association, and word play are entered under [Spoken word poetry.]
  • Example Notes

    • Note under [Spoken word poetry]
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  • Change Notes

    • 1986-02-11: new
    • 2013-02-27: revised
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