Jo Shapcott

(b. 1953)

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(1953– ),

poet, born in London and educated at Trinity College, Dublin, Oxford, and Harvard. Her first collection was Electroplating the Baby (1988), of which the title poem explored a characteristic vein of scientific and medical fantasia: this was followed by Phrase Book (1992) and My Life Asleep (1998). A selection from these three volumes was published in 2000 as Her Book: Poems 1988–1998. Her poetry combines contemporary references (to film, cartoon, news stories) with literary and historical allusions, and is distinguished by sharp wordplay and a disturbing surreal animism. She edited Emergency Kit (1996), an eclectic anthology of contemporary verse, with M. Sweeney.

Subjects: Literature.

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