Philip Metres on Standard Operating Procedure

H. L. Hix: Whatever else they are also doing, these poems (it seems to me) challenge “standard operating procedure.”  “Standard operating procedure” seems both to affect Abu Ghraib (by offering a rationale — or rationalization — for torture) and to be affected by it (in that torture received explicit sanction in the wake of disclosures).  Is it one of the stakes in the poems that there is a relationship between the minimizing of the human element that standardization seeks in general, and the dehumanization that both precedes and results from torture?


Philip Metres:

Philip Metres.  abu ghraib arias.  Flying Guillotine Press, 2011.

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