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"When I first read Khaled Mattawa's Tocqueville some years ago, it rewired my brain and pummeled my heart. A daring meditation on what it means to be a poet and a citizen at the center of American empire, Tocqueville was an astonishing departure from Mattawa's previous lyrically driven work, declaring that it no longer suffices to sing-- even to sing of dark times, as Bertolt Brecht proposed. Reading these poems today, in this timely second edition, we become witnesses to our implicatedness, the vulnerable privilege of a first world existence on a planet in political, economic, and ecological crisis."--Philip Metres
"Khaled Mattawa continues to write a global poetry . . . his voice clearly evolved into one of daring necessity that does not demand national identity." --Bloomsbury Review
"Mattawa's Tocqueville is not a mere revision of that historical document, but poetry based on motion, where narrative doesn't construct a story--it is more a screenplay that metamorphoses into a democratic account, a lyric slide show that disrupts conventional time into 'the befores that follow the first before.' Tocqueville is a major present in (and to) American poetry." --Fady Joudah, Ploughshares
"A poetry in which politics are considered through both potent emotion and exacting investigation, a work haunting in its scope and, most of all, in its critical self-awareness."--Hilary Plum, Kenyon Review
Publication Date: 
April 15, 2019