Great American writers William Carlos Williams, Jonathan Edwards, Emily Dickinson, Noah Webster, Hart Crane, Wallace Stevens, Henry James all in the physicality of their archival manuscripts (reproduced in beautiful facsimiles here) are the presiding spirits ofSpontaneous Particulars: Telepathy of Archives. Also woven into Susan Howe s newest book are beautiful photographs of embroideries and textiles from anonymous craftspeople. All the archived materials are links, discoveries, chance encounters, the visual and acoustic shocks of rooting around amid physical archives. These are the telepathies the bibliomaniacal poet relishes. Rummaging in the archives she finds a deposit of a future yet to come, gathered and guarded...a literal and mythical sense of life hereafter you permit yourself liberties in the first place happiness.
Digital scholarship may offer much for scholars, but Susan Howe loves the materiality of research in real archives and calls her Spontaneous Particulars a collaged swan song to the old ways. "