The Muses of Noigandres: Music and Form in Brazilian Concrete Poetry

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Along visuality, aurality plays a crucial role in concrete poetry. This is particularly true of the Noigandres Group, formed by Brazilian writers Augusto de Campos, Décio Pignatari, and Haroldo de Campos in the 1950s. They conceive of the basic unit of the poem as a three dimensional, “verbivocovisual” entity: the concrete poem, as a manifestation of absolute responsibility towards language, is meant to be read, seen, and heard all at once. The group’s preoccupation with the sonic dimension of poetry led to a fruitful dialogue with both popular and erudite musical trends. In this article, I examine how music inspired the group's formal imagination. Drawing on some examples, I also attempt to differentiate the various uses of the notion of “concrete” in poetry, music, and the visual arts in order to bring to the fore the singularity of concrete poetry in artistic modernity.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Companion to Music and Modern Literature
EditorsRachael Durkin, Peter Dayan, Axel Englund, Katharina Clausius
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781000563344
ISBN (Print)9780367237240
Publication statusPublished - 22 May 2022


  • Concrete Poetry
  • Literature and music
  • Augusto de Campos
  • Haroldo de Campos
  • Décio Pignatari
  • Intermediality
  • Interarts
  • Music and literature
  • Music in literature
  • Concretism
  • Caetano Veloso


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