The Illegal Age, Ellen Hinsey's new book-length sequence, is a powerful investigation into the twentieth-century's dark legacy of totalitarianism and the rise of political illegality. It explores the enduring potential for human beings to set neighbour against neighbour and commit final acts of violence. A book of lyrical reflection and prophesy, The Illegal Age chronicles the arrival of a new, disquieting reality unfolding in our midst. As Marilyn Hacker has written, "In dialogue with Celan, Szymborska, Milosz... this is a daring text - for its political acuity, and for its demonstration of the power in poetry to recount, remember, move the heart while opening the mind." Written in parallel with her first-hand research into the rise of authoritarianism carried out over the last decade, Hinsey's volume warns that - rather than an "Age of Anxiety" - we may indeed be facing the start of the "Illegal Age".
Ellen Hinsey has published eight books of poetry, essays, dialogue and literary translation. Her most recent book is Mastering the Past: Contemporary Central and Eastern Europe and the Rise of Illiberalism (Telos Press, 2017). Her other volumes of poetry include Cities of Memory, which received the Yale Series Award, The White Fire of Time and Update on the Descent, a National Poetry Series Finalist, which draws on her experience at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague. Magnetic North: Conversations with Tomas Venclova / Ellen Hinsey explores ethical experience under totalitarianism.A former faculty member of Skidmore College’s Paris programme, she has been the recipient of numerous awards, including Lannan and Rona Jaffe Foundation fellowships. Hinsey’s work has appeared in publications such as Poetry Review, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Irish Times, The Paris Review and Poetry, and selections have appeared in French, Italian, German, Danish, Polish, Lithuanian, Serbian, and Arabic translation. She lives in Paris and is the International Correspondent for The New England Review.
PBS Members will receive their copy of The Illegal Age in the Autumn mail out in late August, hot off the press, alongside the PBS Bulletin magazine.