“Poetry is going extinct, government data show”

From the Washington Post (April 24, 2015):

…the “ever-elusive question of readership: does anyone read poetry anymore? Given the widespread availability of poetry on the internet, “its possible that poetrys audience might be greater now than ever,” wrote Kate Angus in The Millions last year. But the numbers below show that that’s emphatically not the case. Some people are still reading it, although that number has been dropping steadily over the past two decades.”

…”Assessing the state of contemporary poetry using survey data and Google Trends feels kind of like measuring the quality of a painting based on how large the canvas is. But just as you can’t truly appreciate a work of art without viewing it in the flesh and on the wall, neither can you come to terms with the current state of poetry without understanding that for 20 years, the readers have been taking their attention elsewhere — and not even the internet is making them come back.”

[visualizations of data included with the article]

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