Andrei Codrescu Analysis

Other literary forms

(Poets and Poetry in America)

Andrei Codrescu (kah-DREHS-kew) has written novels, including Messiah (1999), Casanova in Bohemia (2002), and Wakefield (2004), and a collection of shorter pieces, A Bar in Brooklyn: Novellas and Stories, 1970-1978 (1999). He wrote the screenplay for Road Scholar: Coast to Coast Late in the Century (1993), which won several awards, including a Peabody Award. He has published collections of essays, including Zombifications: Essays from National Public Radio (1994), Hail Babylon! Looking for the American City at the End of the Millenium (1998), New Orleans, Mon Amour: Twenty Years of Writing from the City (2006), and The Posthuman Dada Guide: Tzara and Lenin Play Chess (2009), and several memoir/travelogues, including The Hole in the Flag: A Romanian Exile’s Story of Return and Revolution (1991) and Ay Cuba! A Socio-Erotic Journey (1999).

He founded and has served as editor for and contributor to the online journal Exquisite Corpse: A Journal of Letters and Life. He has also been a commentator on National Public Radio and a columnist for Gambit Weekly, a prize-winning alternative newspaper in New Orleans. He has translated the work of Lucian Blaga, a modern Romanian poet, and edited anthologies of material from Exquisite Corpse. He has also issued a number of audio tapes and compact discs.


(Poets and Poetry in America)

Andrei Codrescu has received numerous awards and honors, including five National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, the Big Table Poetry Award (1970), the A. D. Emmart Humanities Award (1982), Pushcart Prizes (1983, 2005), the General Electric Foundation Poetry Award (1985), the Towson State University Literature Prize (1987), the American Civil Liberties Union Freedom of Speech Award (1995), the Mayor’s Arts Award, New Orleans (1996), the Literature Prize of the Romanian Cultural Foundation, Bucharest (1996), the Lowell Thomas Gold Award for Excellence in Travel Journalism (2001), the Ovidius Prize for literature (2006), and the Romania Radio Cultural Award (2008). He was awarded honorary doctorates from Shenandoah College and the Massachussetts College of Art.


(Poets and Poetry in America)

Codrescu, Andrei. “Andrei Codrescu Brings His Unique Take on America to Idaho.” Interview by Anna Webb. McClatchy-Tribune Business News, February 13, 2007, p. 1. Codrescu discusses everything from leaving Romania, to being with the Beat poets, to Hurricane Katrina and the city of New Orleans in Louisiana. He says the United States is “momentarily occupied by zombies,” but its “future is sound.”

_______. “An Interview with Andrei Codrescu.” Interview by Richard Collins. Xavier Review 20, no. 2 (2000): 13-18. The author talks about his writings and his life.

Collins, Richard. “Andrei Codrescu’s Mioritic Space.” MELUS 23, no. 3 (1998): 83-101. Miorita, a ewe in a Romanian folk poem, warns the shepherd that he is about to be betrayed and murdered. The shepherd asks the ewe not to tell his mother that he was murdered but rather that he married the daughter of a king. So Miorita wanders, telling the tale of a wedding that never occurred. Lucian Blaga, the poet whose works Codrescu translated, defined a Mioritic space as a geography of the Romanian imagination.

Marin, Naomi. “The Rhetoric of Andrei Codrescu: A Reading in Exilic Fragmentation.” In Realms of Exile: Nomadism, Diasporas, and Eastern European Voices, edited by Domnica Radulescu. Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2002. Discussion of how Codrescu’s status as an exile from his native land affects his writing.

Olson, Kirby. Andrei Codrescu and the Myth of America. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2005. Examines his poetry and essays and how they relate to Surrealism.

Ratner, Rochelle. Review of It Was Today. Library Journal 128, no. 13 (August, 2003): 88. Sees his poems falling into two types, everyday poems and those reflecting his experiences as an exile.