The Argotist OnlineTM

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The Argotist Online (established in 2005) is the successor to The Argotist magazine. Neither it or the magazine has any relationship to a recently appearing, and anonymously managed, WordPress site called 'The Argotist: A Lexicon of Political Jargon', which can be found here.

The Argotist magazine came into being in 1996 and ran for four years. Nick Watson devised and edited the magazine, and I was its deputy editor.  It was funded by Liverpool University and Arts Council England, and had national distribution through Blackwell's bookshops.

The magazine sought to act as a bridge between what is perceived as “high-brow” and “low-brow” in the arts. Consequently, we had an eclectic mix of interviewees and contributors which included: Joseph Brodsky, Labi Siffre, Adrian Henri, John Cooper Clarke, Benjamin Zephaniah,  Adrian Mitchell, Antony Gormley, David Gedge, Jasper Conran and Sophie Hannah. You can read Nick Watson's 1996 editorial for the first issue of the  magazine here.

The Argotist Online differs from The Argotist magazine in that it is devoted entirely to poetry, and has features, articles and interviews related to it. It also has an ebook publishing arm (Argotist Ebooks) that publishes poetry, short fiction and literary criticism.

Argotist Ebooks publishes all kinds of poetry but is especially interested in non-mainstream poetry. By non-mainstream poetry, I mean poetry that is aware of the plasticity of language, and which places connotation and ambiguity over denotation and precision of meaning. This sort of poetry invites interpretation and allows for plurality of meaning. Please see my article 'Empirical and Non-Empirical Identifiers' for a fuller description of what I mean.  


Jeffrey Side