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September 2010

Wednesday, 9/1

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Thursday, 9/2

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Friday, 9/3

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Saturday, 9/4

NSO Speakeasy: Poetry, Prose, and Anything Goes!

10:30 PM in the Arts Cafe

Join us for an open-mic night featuring readings and performances by members of the class of 2014 (and anyone else who has work to share). Are you finishing up the next great American novel? Do you sing? Have you perfected your stand-up comedy act? Sign up on the spot to read or perform or just come to listen and check out the Writers House. We'll have plenty of food and raffle prizes and moonlit fun.

Sunday, 9/5

Monday, 9/6

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Tuesday, 9/7

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Wednesday, 9/8

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Thursday, 9/9

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Friday, 9/10

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Saturday, 9/11

Sunday, 9/12

Monday, 9/13

A meeting of the Writers House Planning Committee (the "Hub")

5:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

rsvp: jalowent@writing.upenn.edu

From the time of its founding in 1995-1996, the Kelly Writers House has been run more or less collectively by members of its community. Our original team of intrepid founders—the group of students, faculty, alumni, and staff who wanted to create an independent haven for writers and supporters of contemporary writing in any genre—took for themselves the name "the hub." "Hub" was the generic term given by Penn's Provost, President, and other planners who hoped that something very innovative would be done at 3805 Locust Walk to prove the viability of the idea that students, working with others, could create an extracurricular learning community around common intellectual and creative passions. To this day, the Writers House Planning Committee refers to itself as "the hub"—the core of engaged faculty, student, staff, and alumni volunteers from whom the House's creative energy and vitality radiates.

New and old Hub members alike are welcome to join us for pizza and a discussion of upcoming readings and programs, volunteer opportunities, and updates from project leaders. Anyone is welcome to join the Writers House Planning Committee. At this first meeting of the year we will discuss ways you can get involved at Writers House.

Go here to get a sense of what we do; go here for sound clips and photos from our end-of-year party; go here for a list of campus publications.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Tuesday, 9/14

Kane-Wallace Kitchen Celebration

6:00 PM throughout the first floor

Serving up gallons of morning coffee and plate after plate of late-night leftovers alongside poetry, philosophy, and conversation, the kitchen functions as the heart of the Kelly Writers House. At any point in the day you might find a student with a pancake craving whisking a bowl of batter, a staff member making fruit kabobs for an afternoon Write-On! snack or our Program Coordinator demonstrating the fine art of cheese plate garnishing. Because the Writers House is committed to catering almost all of our dinners and receptions ourselves and our space is open at all hours for writing and conversation, our kitchen is used constantly, for cooking, eating, and just hanging out around the green table (with snacks, of course).

An extraordinary gift from Marty Wallace and Ed Kane (C'71) has endowed the Writers House kitchen – enabling us to produce delicious food to feed our friends and guests forever. To thank Marty and Ed and celebrate the inauguration of the "Kane-Wallace Kitchen," we'll be cooking up a tour through Writers House receptions past. All our favorite treats (such as chocolate-chili bread pudding, beet and blue cheese tartlets, and Erin's famous spicy chipotle salad).

To view a Philadelphia Inquirer report on the Kane-Wallace Kitchen, click here

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Wednesday, 9/15

"Lies! Lies! Lies!"

presented by Suppose An Eyes

with Carole Bernstein, Francesca Costanzo, Patricia Green, Don Johnson, Helen Sewell Johnson, Jody Kolodzey, George McDermott, Joseph Myers, Laura Spagnoli, Jonathon Todd

6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen: to an audio recording of this event

Suppose An Eyes is an ongoing workshop for poets sponsored by the Kelly Writers House. Formed in 1999, the group meets two evenings per month, providing a workshop for poets to explore, share and improve their work as part of a supportive community of writers. Though often full, the group is open to anyone interested in writing poetry—any type of poetry, from traditional forms to "found" poetry, flarf, and even computer-generated work. In addition to workshop meetings, Suppose an Eyes participates in readings at various locations in the greater Philadelphia area.

Suppose an Eyes takes its name from a portrait in Gertrude Stein's Tender Buttons:

Suppose it is within a gate which open is open at the hour of closing summer that is to say it is so.

All the seats are needing blackening. A white dress is in sign. A soldier a real soldier has a worn lace a worn lace of different sizes that is to say if he can read, if he can read he is a size to show shutting up twenty-four.

Go red go red, laugh white.

Suppose a collapse in rubbed purr, in rubbed purr get.

Little sales ladies little sales ladies little saddles of mutton.

Little sales of leather and such beautiful beautiful, beautiful beautiful.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Thursday, 9/16

A Celebration of 3808: A Journal of Critical Writing

5:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

co-sponsored by: the Critical Writing Program

Each semester, instructors teaching Critical Writing seminars across a wide range of disciplines at the University of Pennsylvania nominate the best essay written by an undergraduate in their class. A faculty editorial board selects essays from among the nominees to publish in 3808: A Journal of Critical Writing. A student editorial board selects the best essay in the collection as the winner of the Henry LaBarre Jayne Essay Prize.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Friday, 9/17

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Saturday, 9/18

Sunday, 9/19

Monday, 9/20

A Commemoration of the Fifth Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina

6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen: to an audio recording of this event

August 29, 2010 marks the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the storm that devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. That day, the levees in New Orleans were breached in approximately twenty places, flooding much of the city. Four-fifths of the city of New Orleans was underwater the day after the storm. The greatest "natural" disaster in US history, Katrina destroyed not only houses, schools, businesses, and towns but also caused the deaths of nearly as many citizens as the tragedy of 9/11 and the injury, dispossession, and relocation of tens of thousands more. These four poets, all of whom have strong connections to New Orleans, will explore the storm and is aftermath, five years later.

Install the Flash plugin to watch this video.

Peter Cooley lives in New Orleans and is Professor of English and Director of Creative Writing at Tulane. His eight books of poetry are The Company of Strangers, The Room Where Summer Ends, Nightseasons, The Van Gogh Notebook, The Astonished Hours, Sacred Conversations, A Place Made of Starlight. Carnegie Mellon, his publisher, released his new volume Divine Margins, in 2009.

Peter's poems have appeared in such magazines as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Poetry, The Nation, The New Republic and in over one hundred anthologies including most recently The Best American Poetry 2002, The Manthology, Poets on Place and Poetry Daily: 366 Poems from the World’s Most Popular Poetry Website. From 1970-2000 he was Poetry Editor of The North American Review.

Peter has given recent poetry readings of his own work on the Ohio Poetry Circuit, in Spain and France, in New Zealand, where he was the U.S. Representative to the International Poetry Festival, in the Czech Republic, and in Cape Town, South Africa. He received the Inspirational Professor Award in 2001 and the Newcomb Professor of the Year Award. in 2003.

Nicole Cooley grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana. She received her BA from Brown University, her MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop and her PhD from Emory University. Her first book of poetry, Resurrection, won the 1995 Walt Whitman Award and was published by LSU Press in 1996. Her second book of poetry, The Afflicted Girls, about the Salem witch trials of 1692, appeared with LSU Press in April 2004 and was chosen as one of the best poetry books of the year by Library Journal. She also published a novel Judy Garland, Ginger Love, with Regan Books/Harper Collins (1998).

Her third book of poetry, Breach, a collection of poems about Hurricane Katrina and the Gulf Coast, was just published by LSU Press in April 2010. She will publish another book of poems Milk Dress, with Alice James Books in November 2010. She is a professor of English and Creative Writing at Queens College—City University of New York where she directs the new MFA program in Creative Writing and Literary Translation. She currently lives outside of New York City with her husband and two young daughters.

Cynthia Hogue has published seven collections of poetry, most recently, The Incognito Body (2006), Or Consequence (2010), and the co-authored When the Water Came: Evacuees of Hurricane Katrina (interview-poems with photographs by Rebecca Ross ), also published in 2010. Among her honors are a Fulbright Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in poetry, the H.D. Fellowship at the Beinecke Library at Yale University, an Arizona Commission on the Arts Project Grant, and the Witter Bynner Translation Residency Fellowship at the Santa Fe Art Institute.

Also known for her criticism, Hogue has published essays on poetry, ranging from that of Emily Dickinson to Kathleen Fraser and Harryette Mullen. Her critical work includes the co-edited editions We Who Love To Be Astonished: Experimental Feminist Poetics and Performance Art (U of Alabama P, 2001); Innovative Women Poets: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry and Interviews (U of Iowa P, 2006); and the first edition of H.D.'s The Sword Went Out to Sea (Synthesis of a Dream), by Delia Alton (UP of Florida, 2007).

Hogue taught in the M.F.A. program at the University of New Orleans before moving to Pennsylvania, where she directed the Stadler Center for Poetry at Bucknell University for eight years. While in Pennsylvania, she trained in conflict resolution with the Mennonites and became a trained mediator specializing in diversity issues in education. In 2003, she joined the Department of English at ASU as the Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry.

Currently, she is working on a collection of essays entitled Wayward Thinking: Notes on Poetry and Poetics and a book-length translation from the French of Virginie Lalucq and Jean-Luc Nancy entitled Fortino Samáno (The Overflowing of the poem), with her husband, the economist Sylvain Gallais.

Tonya Foster is the author of A Swarm of Bees in High Court, forthcoming from Belladonna and Futurepoem in 2010. She is currently completing A Mathematics of Chaos, a cross-genre, multi-media piece on New Orleans, and Monkey Talk, an inter-genre piece about race, paranoia, and surveillance, and A History of the Bitch, a collection of poems. A native of New Orleans, she resides and writes in Harlem.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Tuesday, 9/21

Careers in Journalism and New Media

What you need to know to get a real job in print or broadcast journalism, book publishing, new media, and beyond

6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

co-sponsored by: The Daily Pennsylvanian and The Nora Prize
watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen: to an audio recording of this event

A knowledgeable panel of five Penn alumni—who have held every job in the business, at such outlets as NPR, GQ, the Daily Beast, and Forbes—will discuss the early trials, tribulations, and eventual bliss of working in the media. Come get the scoop, as these professionals will be fielding your questions and advising aspiring writers and editors on the ever-changing landscape of new media.

Eliot Kaplan, editorial talent director, Hearst Magazines
(former editor-in-chief, Philadelphia Magazine, former managing editor, GQ)

Randall Lane, author and editor-at-large at The Daily Beast
(former editor-in chief of Trader Monthly, Dealmaker and P.O.V magazines, former Washington bureau chief, Forbes)

Galina Espinoza, editorial director and co-president, Latina Media Ventures (including Latina magazine)
(former senior editor, People magazine)

Melody Kramer, associate producer, Fresh Air, WHYY-FM, NPR
(former director and associate producer, "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me," former Kroc Fellow, NPR, Nora Magid Mentorship Prize-winner 2006)

Stephen Fried, author and adjunct professor, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
(former contributing editor, Vanity Fair, GQ, Glamour, Ladies' Home Journal; former editor-in-chief, Philadelphia magazine)

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Wednesday, 9/22

A conversation with novelist Richard Morais

The Hundred Foot Journey

with an Indian food lunch

12:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

rsvp: email wh@writing.upenn.edu or call (215) 746-POEM
watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen: to an audio recording of this event

"That skinny Indian teenager has that mysterious something that comes along once a generation. He is one of those rare chefs who is simply born. He is an artist." And so begins the rise of Hassan Haji, the unlikely gourmand who recounts his life's journey in Richard Morais's charming novel, The Hundred-Foot Journey. Lively and brimming with the colors, flavors, and scents of the kitchen, The Hundred-Foot Journey is a succulent treat about family, nationality, and the mysteries of good taste. We hope you'll join us for a taste of the novel and a scrumptious lunch spread.

Richard C. Morais was a Senior Editor at Forbes and the magazine's longest serving foreign correspondent. An American raised in Switzerland, Morais has lived most of his life overseas, returning to the United States in 2003. He was stationed in London for 17 years, where he was Forbes' European Bureau Chief. He now lives in Philadelphia with his wife and daughter. The Hundred-Foot Journey is his first novel.

Speakeasy: Poetry, Prose, and Anything Goes!

8:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen: to an audio recording of this event

Speakeasy is an open mic night help at the Kelly Writers House every other Wednesday evening. It's an opportunity for writers to share their work, or the work of others, in a friendly setting. Speakeasy was founded in 1997 and continues to be an important part of the regular Writers House programming series. We welcome poets, storytellers, singers, musicians, and anything in between to share their voices with us in the Arts Cafe twice a month. As always: Poetry, prose, anything goes!

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Thursday, 9/23

A poetry reading by Leonard Schwartz

7:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

introduced by: Al Filreis
listen to a recording of this event on PennSound's Leonard Schwartz author page
watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV

Leonard Schwartz is the author of numerous works of poetry, including A Message Back And Other Furors /(Chax), The Library Of Seven Readings (Ugly Duckling Presse), Language As Responsibility (Tinfish), and The Tower Of Diverse Shores (Talisman House). He hosts the radio program Cross Cultural Poetics, teaches at Evergreen, and reads nationally and internationally from his work. His writings on poetics and the Mid-East conflict can be found on the Common Ground News Service (as here) and information on his collaborative project involving poetry and puppetry at nakedpuppets.org.

About his work Richard Foreman has written: "Leonard Schwartz's poems rip apart the organizations of language and experience, allowing those separate realms to collide in ways that give a new electricity to both. His writing is the strongest possible example of a contemporary poetry that makes thought into something sensual, something caressable, enlacing with the reader's lust for those parts of his mind into which he hasn't yet ecstatically tumbled." Thalia Field writes about the recent A Message Back And Other Furors: "Between what's perceived and how one adds meaning spells a moment of infinite duration, an admixture of sense and thinking, of mirror-clear images and impressionistic language. A Message Back... reads like an infinity sign, an unending process of journey and return, specific identity and underlying oneness, the poetry of open thinking in time of war. With provocative borrowings and stinging insights, Leonard Schwartz transcribes an unforgettable conversation."

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Friday, 9/24

Open House

2:00 PM-4:00 PM

The Kelly Writers House Open House is an opportunity for new and old students to explore the House, meet community members and student leaders, and learn about ways to get involved in literary magazines, literacy outreach, writing groups, poetry readings, and more. Meet representatives from the KWH Planning Committee (the Hub), the Common Press, F-Word, Penn Review, Penn Appetit, The Green Couch, First Call, and WriteOn!, among others.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Saturday, 9/25

Sunday, 9/26

Monday, 9/27

LIVE at the Writers House

with the First Person Arts StorySlam Winners and musical guest Ross Bellenoit

7:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

listen: to an audio recording of this event

LIVE at the Writers House is a long-standing collaboration between the Kelly Writers House and WXPN FM (88.5). Six times annually between September and April, Michaela Majoun hosts a one-hour broadcast of poetry, music, and other spoken-word art, along with one musical guest, all from our Arts Cafe onto the airwaves at WXPN. LIVE is made possible by generous support from BigRoc. For more information, contact Producer Erin Gautsche (gautsche@writing.upenn.edu).

Angel Hogan

Mike McCarry

Katonya Mosley

Transplanted from a rural horse farm to downtown Philadelphia in her teens, much of Angel Hogan's writing is fueled by her non-traditional upbringing, which she describes as "a heap of multicultural embarrassments." An award-winning writer, Angel studied Literary Theory at Bucknell University, where she received the Julia Fonville Smithson Prize for poetry and the Bucknell Prize for Women. Among other local groups, she is involved with Mighty Writers, a non-profit free writing program operated by volunteer tutors who teach Philadelphia city students to write in storefront, neighborhood-based centers.

Angel traveled cross country with a Chow-pit puppy in a diaper, and has spent time at her Mom's home in the Yucatan. As a toddler, her favorite meal was pan-fried liver and coffee. Angel currently works at the University of Pennsylvania and lives in West Philly with her cat Mamacita, and Sauce! the dog. When not participating in competitive Story Slams, poetic performance, or writing, she enjoys urban gardening and hammock-swinging.

See more at: www.angelhogan.com

Mike McCarry is a 3rd generation resident of Media PA who currently works in the luxury car business on the main line. A student of English literature in College, Mike has bounced around many different fields of employment since his departure with an incomplete degree. On most summer days, you can find him coaching a semi-professional baseball team in Delaware County and performing hip-hop shows throughout the tri-state area.

R. Eric Thomas is a playwright, storyteller and lethargic blogger. Previously produced plays include Welcome to the Neighborhood, Linda Davis, The Spectator. He is delighted to be competing in his second Grand Slam. He ws seen earlier this week at the First Person Arts/Queer Memoir Salon reading from his essay, "Run Girl, Run." He is currently working on a collection of non-fiction entitled "Enormously Awkward: (Mostly) True Stories + Things That Are Better Left Unsaid" and workshopping a new play. You can find more essays, videos, and unflattering photos at enormouslyawkward.blogspot.com.

Leah Walton moved to Philadelphia on a whim in 2004, and is very happy she stayed. She works as an actor, acting teacher and office assistant in various local theaters. Her hobbies are cross stitching and playing mahjong with her friends on Sunday nights Telling stories is one of her most favorite things to do, and she wishes it was her job. (Thank you to Abby for bringing Leah to her first Slam in February!)

Katonya Mosley is a teacher, storyteller, writer, seeker, basement singer, friend, and timid poet, among other things. She works with some of Philadelphia's neediest residents as a Caseworker. She has been a winner, Guest Storyteller, Guest Judge and Host at Story Slams. In July, Katonya was the Mistress of Ceremonies at the First Annual First Person Arts Summer Grand Slam. She is teaching a storytelling workshop and has co-facilitated Museum Project story circles. She is the editor of a community newsletter. Previously, Katonya was a medical actor, simulating symptoms for live encounters with doctors and medical students; playing various roles for instructional videos; teaching physical examination maneuvers on her body; and training other medical actors. She is trained in Rebirthing Breathwork, a healing modality, and has led breathing workshops. Katonya graduated from Temple Law School in 2005, and is currently writing a memoir about personal responsibility and transcending culture.

Katonya tells the truth. From the depths of her experience, she offers a social critique. At once sharply self-conscious and astoundingly insightful, Katonya's stories deliver involuntary laughs and a message about humanity, which sustains and unfolds.

Ross Bellenoit at 26 has already forged quite a career path, racking up impressive credits as a guitarist, composer and producer. After moving to Philadelphia in 2003, Bellenoit quickly became the leading axe-man for a thriving singer-songwriter scene that spawned Amos Lee (Blue Note), Birdie Busch (Bar None), and ASCAP award-winner John Francis. More recently, he's been making his mark as a songwriter himself, and also as a recording producer and arranger.

Raised in the Pioneer Valley of western Massachusetts, Bellenoit trained on classical guitar for ten years (and viola for five) before studying jazz guitar at the University of the Arts – but Bellenoit is not the sort of musician who lets his studies do the talking. A spontaneous, in-the-moment improviser and consummate team player, Bellenoit has spent the past six years training himself to stay on his toes, and to anticipate the un-obvious. "If there's one thing that I try to keep aware of," Bellenoit says, "it's the song's temperament. Whether you're playing 'How High The Moon' to a handful of jazz aficionados or singing a folk tune that you wrote yourself, you have to surrender yourself completely to the moment. Serve the song, and the song will serve you."

Bellenoit more often than not can be found in the recording studio. He has contributed to a wide array of albums – rock records, jazz records, gospel records, R&B records, even a song about cheeseburgers written for Philadelphia Inquirer food critic Craig Laban. He's worked with renowned producers John Carter Cash, Phil Nicolo and Brian McTear – and now, working out of Turtle Studios in Old City, Bellenoit is producing records for singer-songwriters himself. His own group, The Little Rolling Thunder Revue, will release its full-length debut later this year, written and produced by Bellenoit start-to-finish.

Bellenoit has also racked up a considerable amount of touring experience, most notably touring with Bob Dylan and Elvis Costello as a member of Amos Lee's band in 2007. He's made multiple regional tours with honky-tonk group The Sweetback Sisters (with whom he appeared on NPR's "A Prairie Home Companion") and fellow Philadelphian Birdie Busch, and he joined Joseph Parsons on tour in Europe in 2008.

Tre Rials is a native of South Louisiana. He moved to Philadelphia following Hurricane Katrina after discovering the many similarities between Philadelphia and New Orleans. As the Research Manager for The Center City District, he spends his days judging the economic health of Center City by analyzing any type of data he can get his hands on. A frequent storyteller with First Person Arts, he chronicles his trials and tribulations as a single gay man who until recently lived upstairs from a member of the world's oldest profession.

Winner of "Best in Philly," First Person StorySlams are monthly, real-life-storytelling competitions held at World Cafe Live and L'Etage in Philadelphia. Each month's theme elicits stories that come from the life experiences of Philly's storytellers. Who are these local tale spinners? Everyone with a story and a little sense of competition is encouraged to participate—that means *YOU!*

StorySlams take place on the second Monday of each month at World Cafe Live and the *fourth Tuesday of each month at L'Etage. World Cafe Live is located at 3025 Walnut Street. L'Etage is at 6th & Bainbridge Streets. Doors open at 7:30 PM, and the slam begins at 8:30.

Click here for all StorySlam Dates and Themes.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Tuesday, 9/28

Material v. Memory

a walk through 12 perishable events

6:34 PM in the Arts Cafe

Organized by playwright and former ArtsEdge Resident, Greg Romero, Material v. Memory is a guided walk through a dozen perishable writing events, all designed to be experienced by a traveling audience for three to five minutes, and then to disappear forever. Projects created by playwrights, poets, dancers, architects, fiction writers, designers, and performance artists explore questions of space, place, loss, and our infinite/intimate relationship with memory.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Wednesday, 9/29

Brodsky Gallery Opening for Hiroyuki Nakamura

7:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

Hiroyuki Nakamura was born in 1977 and grew up in a suburb of the small industrial city Hamamatsu in Japan. Like many Japanese children, Nakamura was fascinated with trains and at the early age of five he started to photograph this fascination in earnest. When he was eleven years old, Nakamura and his family moved to Chicago where he spent three years at a private Japanese middle school with the intent of returning to Japan for high school. During that time, Nakamura planned out a series of road trips with his family in order to photograph trains and the vast American landscape. By the end of middle school, Nakamura and his family had driven through most of the 50 states, an experience which Nakamura says certainly influenced his decision to stay in America when his parents returned to Japan.

After graduating from a private military academy turned prep school, Nakamura moved to Philadelphia in 1996 and studied photography at Drexel University. While at Drexel, he started a series of what he called "one-of-a-kind" photographs in which he treated his printed paper negative as a canvas; drawing, scratching and adding other elements to create surrealistic mixed-media prints which he then enlarged. In 2000, he moved to New York City where he received his MFA in photography in 2002 from the School of Visual Arts. While at SVA, Nakamura started moving more towards mixed media photography, until finally replacing the film negative altogether with canvas in 2004. Since then, Nakamura has been painting exclusively. Currently he lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)

Thursday, 9/30

The Whole Island: Six Decades of Cuban Poetry

a discussion with anthology editor Mark Weiss

presented by: Writers Without Borders

6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe

watch: a video recording of this event via KWH-TV
listen to an audio recording of the event on PennSound's Writers Without Borders series page

Book description from UC Press: "Cuba's cultural influence throughout the Western Hemisphere, and especially in the United States, has been disproportionally large for so small a country. This landmark volume is the first comprehensive overview of poetry written over the past sixty years. Presented in a beautiful Spanish-English en face edition, The Whole Island makes available the astonishing achievement of a wide range of Cuban poets, including such well-known figures as Nicolás Guillén, José Lezama Lima, and Nancy Morejón, but also poets widely read in Spanish who remain almost unknown to the English-speaking world—among them Fina García Marruz, José Kozer, Raúl Hernández Novás, and Ángel Escobar—and poets born since the Revolution, like Rogelio Saunders, Omar Pérez, Alessandra Molina, and Javier Marimón. The translations, almost all of them new, convey the intensity and beauty of the accompanying Spanish originals. With their work deeply rooted in Cuban culture, many of these poets—both on and off the island—have been at the center of the political and social changes of this tempestuous period. The poems offered here constitute an essential source for understanding the literature and culture of Cuba, its diaspora, and the Caribbean at large, and provide an unparalleled perspective on what it means to be Cuban."

"The Whole Island is a masterwork of cartography: a map of what is, for English-language readers, an almost entirely unexplored territory, full of poets—at home or in the diaspora—whom we ought to know." —Eliot Weinberger

"Weiss delicately gathers six decades of Cuban poetry in this bilingual anthology. This literary feat, an act of opposition to censorship, inevitably presents the works of poets who have had to fight for their independence. . . . This is a prized collection of Cuban poetry. Recommended for all libraries and bookstores." —Library Journal

"Effectively broaden[s] the sense of poetic terrain outside the United States and also create[s] a superb collection of foreign poems in English. There is nothing else like it." —The Nation

Meetings and classes (may require registration or permission; email for more info)