Gerald Stern Analysis

Other literary forms

(Poets and Poetry in America)

Although Gerald Stern is known primarily as a poet, he has also written a number of perceptive essays.


(Poets and Poetry in America)

Gerald Stern’s poetic achievements have been recognized through many awards and honors. He has received four National Endowment for the Arts grants and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the Academy of American Poets (1993). His Lucky Life was named the Lamont Poetry Selection (1977) and was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award. He received the Bess Hokin Award (1980), the Bernard F. Conners Prize for Poetry from The Paris Review (1982), the Melville Cane Award (1982) for The Red Coal, the Jerome J. Shestack Poetry Prize (1984) from the American Poetry Review, the P.E.N. Award, the Paterson Prize (1992) for Bread Without Sugar, the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize (1996), the National Book Award (1998) for This Time, the Wallace Stevens Award (2005), the National Jewish Book Award (2005), and the Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement (2006) for Everything Is Burning. American Sonnets was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize in 2003. In 2006, he was elected a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.


(Poets and Poetry in America)

Herschthal, Eric. “Late-Blooming Poet.” The New York Jewish Week 221, no. 51 (May 15, 2009): 49-51. This profile of the poet at age eighty-four examines how he came to write poetry and the Jewish influence on his work.

Hillringhouse, Mark. “The New York School Poets.” Literary Review 48, no. 4 (Summer, 2005): 146-179. In a series of informal reminiscences, Hillringhouse discusses Stern and other poets of his circle, including mention of an incident that appears in one of Stern’s poems.

Hirsch, Edward. “A Tribute to Gerald Stern.” Antioch Review 67, no. 1 (Winter, 2009): 88-89. A short, perceptive sketch and evaluation of Stern by a fellow poet.

Lewis, Larry. “Eden and My Generation.” In Conversant Essays: Contemporary Poets on Poetry, edited by James McCorkle. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1990. Lewis discusses English poetry’s preoccupation with the loss of Eden in his essay. He lists Stern’s Lucky Life as one of the works he says does not reflect a fall from Eden. Instead, he sees Stern’s Lucky Life as rooted in a sense of home and place.

Somerville, Jane. Making the Light Come: The Poetry of Gerald Stern. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1990. This full-length study of Stern’s poetry pays particular attention to the function of...

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