Jo Gill is Professor of Twentieth-Century and American Literature at the University of Exeter, UK, and Dean of the College of Humanities. She specializes in mid-century literature and culture and on poetry and the built environment.
In the near-century since the publication of The Bridge (1930), Hart Crane has been widely recognized as the poet of urban modernity, or, in his own words, as a “suitable Pindar for the dawn of the machine age." He has been acclaimed as celebrant and critic, by turn, of America’s myth of itself and as a pioneer cartographer of the queer spaces of the modern metropolis. Paradoxically, perhaps, it is his rendering of the late nineteenth-century Brooklyn Bridge (designed by John Roebling, started in 1869 and opened in 1883), which has been taken as central to his vision of early twentieth-century America’s tensile complexity.