Friday, August 07, 2009


"... the theory-of-no-theory ... is the most rigid and confining of theories, as well as the most prevalent. In every generation the theory-of-no-theory shouts loudest in the third-rate - for whom, always, 'the way to make poems is known'."

- Donald Hall, from 'Theory x Theory' in Poetry & Ambition


  1. Does it has something to do with nihilism?
    or is it just anti-scientific stuff?

  2. Hi Hannah! :)

    I don't necessarily agree with everything Donald Hall says as a critic... but he does say some sensible things (this quote being one example).

  3. Hi Mariana,

    Hall is talking about poets' theories of poetry. He's specifically referring to those poets who have no theory, or feel they don't need a theory in order to write what they write.

  4. Now I get it, thanks for the explanation stu