What does it mean to have ‘heritage’, and how do we perform or undo it?
In these daring and sonorous poems, Anaxagorou conducts a researched unpacking of two countries whose dividing lines of a colonial past are still visible and felt.
Uniquely engaged with the complexities of Cyprus and the diasporic experience, these poems map both an island’s public history alongside a person’s private reckoning. They offer a ferocious and uncompromising look towards the damaging historical structures that have led to now.
Fearless, intensely honest and hopeful, Heritage Aesthetics merges Anthony’s gift for performance and his brilliant experimentation with form to create a vivid insistence to communicate a self in the world.
'One of the most politically engaged poets of our time... Uncompromisingly inventive, Heritage Aesthetics taps into the discordant music of our time and stops tracks.' - Kit Fan
'An education in empathy and its limitations, the liminality and porousness of nations, histories, races and memory... This is poetry bordering on pure imagination that makes its own conditions for living in the now.' - Sandeep Parmar
"Through a keen attentiveness to the complicities and possibilities of language, HERITAGE AESTHETICS reveals how disclaiming a country might be the most honest method of loving it." - The Guardian
"Anthony Anaxagorou’s work is erudite but he doesn’t shy from unease; he pokes holes in nostalgia and challenges colonial othering, while looking to the past and future of his own family with time-travelling dexterity."
- Best Books of 2022, Financial Times
"In his second collection, the British-born Cypriot poet cleverly navigates the impact of colonial history on contemporary Britain. State violence, a fascination with boats, and the voices of military men abound, and there’s a real tenderness to the way Anaxagorou combines the personal and the political." - Best Poetry Books of 2022, New Statesman