Distant Voices G: Thesis, Readers’ Reports

You can download and read the PDF file for the entire Thesis here.
The file is here divided into six HTML pages, numbered 1 to 6, presented on this WordPress site as large and ‘responsive’ blog pages. I tried to make the Thesis into one large HTML page, but the uploading times were horrible, and the editing was problematical.

[Links: click on the bracketed guillemets below]
[«»] Thesis, Part 1 of 6 : Poems
[«»] Thesis, Part 2 of 6 : Exegesis 1 of 3: About the Poems
[«»] Thesis, Part 3 of 6 : Exegesis 2 of 3: Prior Projects
[«»] Thesis, Part 4 of 6 : Exegesis 3 of 3: Dream-Work
[«»] Thesis, Part 5 of 6 : 8 Appendices
[«»] Thesis, Part 6 of 6 : Bibliography
[«»] Thesis, Readers’ Reports ← You are here.

  Markers’ Comments: Excerpts

(Excerpts from the examination markers’ comments. One of the markers was Australian, one British.)

‘… by far the best Creative Writing doctoral submission I have read… it could serve as a model of its kind for future students’

  Marker 1

Tranter is one of the most innovative and thoughtful poets to have wrestled with Ashbery as his precursor, and one of the most interesting aspects of Distant Voices is the way he pastiches, re-writes, re-angles, or defaces Ashbery poems in an agonistic struggle that closely mirrors, as he himself points out, Harold Bloom’s theories about the anxiety of influence…

I… found the explanation of the sources of the poems in the opening ‘Vocoder’ section of the poetic part of the thesis particularly illuminating.

The [poems] inspired by Hitchcock films struck me as particularly good, and I was interested to learn of Tranter’s sense of affinity with Hitchcock in his discursive comments on these poems. They reveal his characteristically witty alertness to the limitations of particular genres (in this case film noir), but also captured with a delicate, dreamy fullness the hypnotic state in which we absorb characters, details, and narratives on the big screen.

John Tranter is one of most distinguished poets of his era, and it seems to me inconceivable that this degree not be granted him. I certainly support the awarding of it in the strongest possible terms.

  Marker 2

This is an outstanding work, by far the best Creative Writing doctoral submission I have read and I have no reservations about recommending it. Its excellence lies in the quality of the creative component (which, given its author’s status and achievement, is not surprising) and in an exegetical section which is valuable because the issues that the poems themselves raise are so central to questions about poetry, creativity, tradition, voice and a host of other areas.

Critical components of Creative theses are always problems and this is an excellent exegesis which might well serve as a model for how it can be done…

This is a beautifully presented thesis — again it could serve as a model of its kind for future students.