Viewing Louis Zukofsky as a reader, writer, and innovator of twentieth-century poetry, Sandra Stanley argues that his works serve as a crucial link between American modernism and post- modernism.
Like Ezra Pound, Zukofsky saw himself as a participant in the transformation of a modern American poetics; but unlike Pound, Zukofsky, the ghetto-born son of an immigrant Russian Jew, was keenly aware of his marginal position in society. Championing the importance of the little words, such as a and the, Zukofsky effected his own proletarian "revolution of the word."
Stanley explains how Zukofsky emphasized the materiality of language, refusing to reduce it to a commodity controlled by an "authorial/authoritarian" self. She also describes his legacy to contemporary poets, particularly such Language poets as Ron Silliman and Charles Bernstein.