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The Poetry of the PossibleSpontaneity, Modernism, and the Multitude$
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Joel Nickels

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780816676088

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816676088.001.0001

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Rising from Nowhere

Rising from Nowhere

Self-Valorization in William Carlos Williams’s Poetry

Chapter:
(p.47) 1 Rising from Nowhere
Source:
The Poetry of the Possible
Author(s):

Joel Nickels

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816676088.003.0002

This chapter focuses on William Carlos Williams’s poetic method and concept of self-valorization. Self-valorization refers to a process of value creation that eludes monetary measure and whose object is not the production of commodities but rather the reproduction of the multitude’s own capacities. Williams presents the multitude’s self-valorization as no more than an aspect of capital valorization. He suggests that the talents, capacities, and organizational skill of the multitude cannot be dynamized and fulfilled through monetary compensation, since even a maximum of buying power will not restore the multitude to the decision-making processes, organizational initiatives, and technological infrastructures that shape their existence as producers of wealth. He asks whether the self-valorization of the multitude could be imagined as a large-scale force of social regulation.

Keywords:   William Carlos Williams, self-valorization, value creation, monetary compensation, wealth, social regulation

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