It's the scene where he writes on the chalkboard, "I sound my barbaric yawp
over the rooftops of the world," which is a Walt Whitman quote.
(How, after all, can a Stanford English Professor publishing with America's oldest university press not be a member in good standing of the Literati and Academics Club?) Vermeule claims to counter the "stentorian no" in Knights and de Man with a "barbaric yawp
," (94) but this is Whitman in a starched white lab coat; no less than Knights's formalism or de Man's deconstruction, her science aspires to the disciplinary high ground.
Instead she goes back to his image of the reverberating ring of a stone tumbling down a well, sounding its yawp
into the world.
Saxophonist John Zorn represented Reed's improvisational side with a squealing, scurrying, exultantly perpetual-motion yawp
of a solo.
In other words, how do you negotiate between Walt Whitman's "barbaric yawp
" and T.S.
Whitman himself was not unaffected by this anxiety, as he struggled to reconcile his outcast "barbaric yawp
" with his democratic credentials to absorb his fellow citizens "en masse" (2002: 709, 679).
Before Elisha's intervention, during John's sufferings, we see John capable only of what Joshua Gunn calls "uncontrolled speech": "the cry, the grunt, the scream, and the yawp
Throughout the recording, great fun is had with the orchestral music genre, as orchestral quotes are offered out of context, and the occasional barbaric yawp
, collective crooning, aural theater, or foot stomping irreverently and joyously punctuates the music.
Founded by a utopian German emigre who imagined it as "the garden spot of America," Cullman itself is a sundown town with storybook touches: early 20th-century storefronts, the yawp
and clatter of a train and boxcars plodding through downtown.
Here we see Hamby's work at its best: the formal stricture of alphabet and rhyme (an abecedarian in couplets) creates the pressurized space where her language combusts into exuberant lyric, a rhapsodic yawp
. This poem is also the best answer to Hamby's own concerns about the emptiness of American speech: she finds real poetry--and a democratic vision that echoes both Walt Whitman and Emma Lazarus--in an American linguistic "menagerie" of "Butterfingers" and "black holes," of "butchers" and "spackle" and "quarks." In the end, even if she sometimes finds herself "gagging" on it, Hamby ultimately revels in--even as she gives form to--the anarchic language the "Viking dudes" bequeathed to Hollywood and Madison Avenue.
There has perhaps been no better announcement of horror's renewed vigor than the box office dethroning of Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ (2004) by the gruesome remake of Dawn of the Dead (2004), an apparent victory of the profane over the pious in which the horror genre boisterously proclaimed its return to the scene and to the screen with an almost Whitmanesque barbaric yawp
"I too am not a bit tamed, I too am untranslatable, / I sound my barbaric yawp
over the roofs of the world." But, like the poet, she did not know all we share with them.