The World Record

The World Record

Edited by: Neil Astley and Anna Selby

Published by: Bloodaxe Books

The World Record is an international anthology of work by poets from all the countries taking part in the 2012 London Olympics, featuring a poem from each of the 204 Olympic nations, from Armenia to Tuvalu, Azerbaijan to Turkmenistan.

With this book you can discover the world through its keenest observers, political activists and most articulate wordsmiths. There’s something for every taste: new voices as well as world greats, rappers and spoken word artists as well as poets and storytellers. The World Record marks the first time so many living poets from so many countries have been gathered together in one anthology – and 2012 was the first time so many poets have been gathered in one place. Up to 204 poets came together in London for Poetry Parnassus, a week-long celebratory gathering as part of the finale of the Cultural Olympiad, the Festival of the World and the London 2012 Festival.

Introduced by the festival’s curator, Simon Armitage, The World Record shows how poetry crosses all international boundaries to speak to readers everywhere.

This anthology includes the work of a huge array of poets and translators, the full list of which can be found within the book.

The World Record is a unique publication, a snapshot or cross-section of global poetry from over two hundred countries... This ambitious anthology is not only a record of that extraordinary happening but an enduring and echoing experience, one that celebrates and honours a multitude of voices, languages and attitudes, all joined under the flag of poetry’
Simon Armitage.