The Master of the Sentences

Style and Peter Porter

in Critical Survey
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  • 1 University of Melbourne
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'The activity of reading, for Peter, is the battleground of virtue and vice.' Such a view of things may seem archaic indeed in times both as poetically sportive and as programmatically sceptical as our own; but I take it that the notion that reading may be an act of engagement still retains some currency. And although it is a long way from twelfth-century France to twenty-first-century England or Australia, it is not hard to see an investment in such engagement in Peter Porter's poetry – as indeed in his prose, and in his conversation; after all, the twinning of urbanity with militancy is not without precedent.

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