Hart Crane's Bridge in the information age
Barrios, Jessica Danielle
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This essay uses Hart Crane’s long poem The Bridge as a model for comparing the poetic conflicts of the machine age to those of the information age, and for illustrating the striking degree to which Crane’s poetics anticipate not only the theoretical concerns, but also the technical and formal concerns, of information-age poetry. I discuss The Bridge as an early indicator of hypertextual poetic modes, and I explore Crane’s employment of proto-virtual reality and cybernetic theory. The Bridge stands as evidence of Crane’s prescience of what would become the proliferating paradoxical relationships among humans and their technologies in the twenty-first century, as well as of the ways in which technological advancement would come to bear on the evolution of narrative, history and identity construction.