Friday, March 07, 2008

The Rapidly Rising Organ of The Shit Creek Review

The Guardian, once described by Frederick Engels as 'an organ of the middle class’, but now the leading centre-left British newspaper, has recently noticed another organ in the paddock (so to speak), namely The Shit Creek Review.

Tim Radford, a columnist in the Education section of The Guardian, discussing the ubiquitous term 'edgy', refers to an SCR article written by Rose Kelleher:

I first noticed the word "edgy" in poetry reviews. It is still a poetry word. "Of all the ongoing poetry wars, the one that most interests me these days is Edgy vs. Nice," says a commentator in the Shit Creek Review. This organ helpfully invokes the American Heritage Dictionary, which defines edgy as "daring, provocative, or trend-setting" to make a point, but very often, the word edgy makes no particular point at all. Decades ago, poetry critics used to describe verse as being "taut" or "sinewy" or "nervous." These days they use the word "edgy". The implication is that "edgy" is good, without actually committing the critic to any precision about the nature or extent of this goodness...

Prosaic postcards from the edgy

Tim mentions Rose's essay to support his claim that 'edgy' is still a
'poetry word', and his column makes some similar points to Rose's essay.

Rose Kelleher's essays are good value indeed—almost as good as her excellent poetry (which has appeared on and off in SCR since our very first issue). Her essay 'Edgy vs Nice' broke new ground in the hot new field of Edginess Studies.

As for The Guardian's description of The Shit Creek Review as an organ—well, your editor's mind boggles! Clearly The Guardian, as it ventures into the murky waters of Shit Creek, is beginning to realise that there is another proud organ on the rise, a magnificent instrument that will expand and grow to gigantic heights. One day, paddlers, SCR will rival and surpass the great Guardian itself, which is destined to fade into the gloom of our mighty shadow!


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