In this thesis I consider the work of Anne Carson, Juliana Spahr, Maggie Nelson and Lisa
Robertson as case studies in the context of debates around feminist lyric, post-critique and
experimental women’s writing. Differently situated, these four case studies address the fall of the
hermeneutics of suspicion and concomitant rise of love as a viable critical mode. Although this is
frequently framed as a “turn” in contemporary academic criticism, I argue reframing love from
rupture to (lyric) tradition opens up the potential for alternative ways of reading “post-critically”.
I call this “old love” for its intersections with the lyric, and the tendency for these writers to be
read as arriere-garde rather than avant-garde.