This book will create greater public awareness of some recent exciting findings in the formal study of poetry. The last influential volume on the subject, Rhythm and Meter , edited by Paul Kiparsky and Gilbert Youmans, appeared fifteen years ago. Since that time, a number of important theoretical developments have taken place, which have led to new approaches to the analysis of meter. This volume represents some of the most exciting current thinking on the theory of meter. In terms of empirical coverage, the papers focus on a wide variety of languages, including English, Finnish, Estonian, Russian, Japanese, Somali, Old Norse, Latin, and Greek. Thus, the collection is truly international in its scope. The volume also contains diverse theoretical approaches that are brought together for the first time, including Optimality Theory (Kiparsky, Hammond), other constraint-based approaches (Friedberg, Hall, Scherr), the Quantitative approach to verse (Tarlinskaja, Friedberg, Hall, Scherr, Youmans) associated with the Russian school of metrics, a mora-based approach (Cole and Miyashita, Fitzgerald), a semantic-pragmatic approach (Fabb), and an alternative generative approach developed in Estonia (M. Lotman and M. K. Lotman).
The book will be of interest to both linguists interested in stress and speech rhythm, constraint systems, phrasing, and phonology-syntax interaction and poetry, as well as to students of poetry interested in the connection between language and literature.