A poetry reading by Peter Gizzi
6:30 PM in the Arts Cafe
Peter Gizzi is the author of seven collections of poetry, most recently, Archeophonics, In Defense of Nothing: Selected Poems 1987-2011, and Threshold Songs. His honors include the Lavan Younger Poet Award from the Academy of American Poets, and fellowships in poetry from The Rex Foundation, The Howard Foundation, The Foundation for Contemporary Arts, The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and The Judith E. Wilson Visiting Fellowship in Poetry at the University of Cambridge. His editing projects have included o-blek: a journal of language arts, The Exact Change Yearbook, The House That Jack Built: The Collected Lectures of Jack Spicer (1998) and, with Kevin Killian, My Vocabulary Did This to Me: The Collected Poetry of Jack Spicer (2008). He works at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. For more information: petergizzi.org.
A reading by Daniel Saldaña París
Creative Writing Program
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
hosted by: Laynie Browne
Widely described as one of the rising new voices of Mexican literature, Daniel Saldaña París is an essayist, poet and novelist. His first novel, Among Strange Victims (Coffee House Press), was translated into English by Christina MacSweeney and published to critical acclaim in 2016.
He studied philosophy at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid between 2002 and 2006 and, during this time, was an editorial assistant for the Spanish edition of the cultural magazine, Letras Libres. In 2006 he gained a Young Creators grant from FONCA (Mexican National Fund for Culture and the Arts) and from 2007 to 2009 received a further award from the Fundación para las Letras Mexicanas (Mexican Literature Foundation). He was recently awarded once more with the FONCA grant for the 2016/2017 period.
Saldaña París has published two collections of poetry: Esa pura materia (That Pure Matter, awarded the “Jaime Reyes” Prize for Young Poets in 2007) and La máquina autobiográfica (The Autobiographical Machine). He edited and wrote the prologues for Doce en punto: Poesía chilena reciente (Twelve Sharp: Recent Chilean Poetry) and Un nuevo modo: Antología de narrativa mexicana actual (A New Way: Anthology of present-day Mexican Fiction), both published by the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in 2012. That same year, he was a writer in residence at the Union des Écrivaines et des Écrivains Québécois with an award given by the Conseil des Artes et des Lettres du Québec, in Montreal. He has been anthologized, most recently in Mexico20: New Voices, Old Traditions, published in the UK by Pushkin Press.
He is also the creator of Método Universal de Poesia Derivada (Universal method of Derived Poetry), which features urban tours taking a poetic text as the point of departure; this project was included as a transmedia work in the Sexto Foro de Arte Público Siqueiros (Sixth Public Art Forum “Siqueiros”) in Mexico City in 2009. His piece ‘No quiero saber nada de mí mismo’ (‘I Don’t Want To Know Anything About Myself’) was included in a group exhibition held at Hose of Gaga Gallery in Mexico City in 2014. He made his debut as an actor in Miguel Calderon’s Zeus, which premiered at the Morelia Film Festival in 2016.
He has been a writer in residence at the Omi International Arts Center in 2014 and 2015, and at The MacDowell Colony in 2016. His work has appeared in BOMB!, Publisher’s Weekly, Guernica, The Guardian, LitHub.com, Electric Literature, Music & Literature, The Quarterly Conversation, El País, and on KCRW’s UnFictional, among others. Some of his poetry has been translated into English, French and Swedish for international magazines.
Saldaña París has worked for more than ten years as a freelance editor and translator for art institutions such as the Museo Universitario de Arte Contemporáneo, Fundación Alumnos 47, and Casa Vecina, and for publishing houses such as Random House Mexico and Fondo de Cultura Económica. Between 2014 and 2015, he was editor in chief for the poetry series Práctica Mortal, published by the Mexican Secretariat of Culture. He has also written for publications by Mexican artists such as Miguel Calderón, Iñaki Bonillas, Mariana Castillo Deball, Tatiana Bilbao, and Francisco Mata Rosas, among others.
He currently writes a monthly column for the Latin American edition of Esquire magazine and lives in Montreal, Canada.
Lunch with David Gambacorta
12:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
rsvp: firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-746-POEM
hosted by: Dick Polman
David Gambacorta is a writer-at-large at the Philadelphia Inquirer who focuses on longform storytelling projects that cover politics, criminal justice and everything in between. He previously worked as a senior reporter at Philadelphia Magazine, and as a staff writer at the Philadelphia Daily News. He's also written for Esquire, The Baffler, Longreads, and The Marshall Project.
5:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
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.
Race and Form: A Dialogue
with Dorothy Wang, John Keene, and Meg Onli, moderated by David Eng
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
hosted by: the Creative Writing Program
In conversation with the Institute of Contemporary Art's fall 2017 exhibit Speech/Acts, this panel will address a number of issues related to race and aesthetics across a variety of artistic forms, including but not limited to poetry and visual art.
Dorothy Wang is an Associate Professor in the American Studies Program at Williams College. Her monograph Thinking Its Presence: Form, Race, and Subjectivity in Contemporary Asian American Poetry (Stanford University Press, 2013) won the Association for Asian American Studies' 2016 award for best book of literary criticism and honorable mention in the Poetry Foundation's inaugural Pegasus Awards for Poetry Criticism. The only annual conference on race and creative writing is named after the book and has been held since 2014. Wang gave the Leslie Scalapino Lecture in Innovative Poetics at Naropa University in 2015. That same year, she conceived and co-founded the "Race and Poetry and Poetics in the UK" (RAPAPUK) research initiative, which held its first conference in London in 2016. During academic year 2017-2018, Wang will be in residence at the CUNY-Graduate Center on an ACLS Frederick Burkhardt Fellowship.
John Keene’s most recent books include the short fiction collection Counternarratives (New Directions, 2015), which received a 2016 American Book Award, a 2016 Lannan Literary Award for Fiction, and in March 2017 the UK's inaugural Republic of Consciousness Prize; the art book GRIND (ITI Press, 2016), an art-text collaboration with photographer Nicholas Muellner; and the poetry chapbook Playland (Seven Kitchens Press, 2016). He is also the translator of Brazilian author Hilda Hilst’s novel Letters from a Seducer (Nightboat Books / A Bolha Editora, 2014), and other works of fiction and poetry. He chairs the department of African American and African Studies, and also teaches English and creative writing at Rutgers University-Newark.
Meg Onli is a curator and writer whose work attends to the intricacies of race and the production of space. Prior to joining Institute of Contemporary Art she was the Program Coordinator at the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. While at the Graham Foundation she worked on the exhibitions Architecture of Independence: African Modernism and Barbara Kasten: Stages. In 2010 she created the website Black Visual Archive for which she was awarded a 2012 Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant. In 2014 she was the recipient of a research grant from the Graham Foundation for the collaborative project Remaking the Black Metropolis: Contemporary Art, Urbanity, and Blackness in America with curator Jamilee Polson Lacy. Onli holds a Master’s degree in art history from the Courtauld Institute of Art. Her writing has appeared in Art21, Daily Serving, and Art Papers.
Michael Gizzi Retrospective
William Corbett & Stan Mir, in conversation with Davy Knittle
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
William Corbett is a poet, art writer, teacher and editor who directs the small press Pressed Wafer. He has published books of Philip Guston, Albert York and Stuart Williams. He edited the letters of the poet James Schuyler and supplied the introduction to Michael Gizzi's Collected Poems.
Stan Mir is a poet and critic whose work has appeared in Hyperallergic Weekend, The Asian American Literary Review, Jacket2, and Seedings. His interview with Michael Gizzi and Craig Watson appeared in Jacket 40. He lives in Philadelphia and teaches writing and literature at Temple University.
A reading by Orhan Pamuk
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
RSVP REQUIRED: email@example.com or (215) 746-POEM
co-sponsored by: the Middle East Center, the Wolf Humanities Center, and the Department of English
Orhan Pamuk won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2006. His novel My Name Is Red won the 2003 IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His work has been translated into more than sixty languages.
Image credits: Elena Seibert
Herman Beavers and William J. Harris
A poetry reading
6:00PM in the Arts Cafe
Herman Beavers is Professor of English and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he has been teaching African American Literature and Creative Writing since 1989. His poems have appeared in Whiskey Island, Cross Connect, Black American Literature Forum (presently titled The African American Review), Dark Phrases, The Cincinnati Poetry Review, Peregrine, The Painted Bride Quarterly, Callaloo, MELUS, The Langston Hughes Colloquy, Versadelphia, Cleaver Magazine, and American Arts Quarterly, as well as the anthology, Gathering Ground: A Cave Canem Reader. His chapbook, A Neighborhood of Feeling won first prize in the Doris Press Chapbook competition. He was among the first group of Cave Canem Fellows when the group was established in 1996. Since then, he has given readings in and around the Philadelphia area, including readings with Yusef Komunyakaa, Elizabeth Alexander, June Jordan, and Major Jackson and been featured on Live at the Kelly Writers House (on Penn’s radio station, WXPN). His poems have been nominated for The Best American Poetry series, The Best of the Web, and nominated three times for The Pushcart Prize in Poetry. He has been a finalist for the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award, the Kathryn A. Morton Poetry Prize, and the Lena Miles Wever Poetry Prize. Dr. Beavers has recently completed work on a chapbook of poems, The Vernell Poems and a full length poetry manuscript, Even in Such Light. His chapbook, Obsidian Blues is forthcoming from Agape Editions as part of its Morning House Chapbook Series. He is now at work on a volume of poems that feature characters from Toni Morrison’s Beloved. He lives in Burlington Township, NJ with his wife, Lisa, and their two children, Michael and Corinne.
William J. Harris lives and writers in Brooklyn, New York. He is both professor emeritus and former director of the Creative Writing Program (2010-2014) at the University of Kansas. Among his books are Crooners, In My Own Dark Way, Hey Fella Would You Mind Holding This Piano a Moment, and The Poetry and Poetics of Amir Baraka; he has published poems in more than 50 anthologies, including the classic, The Poetry of Black America, the innovative Every Goodbye Ain’t Gone and the recent Supplement. His work has also appeared in numerous journals, such as Lute & Drum, Artforum, Catamaran, Callaloo, and American Scholar. Presently, Harris is writing four chapbooks: “Sappho,” poems written after the ancient poet, “Catullus,” poems written after the first century Latin poet, “Brave New World,” a chapbook of science fiction poems, and “Lucifer,” a small book about that fellow.
Lunch with Matthew Nussbaum of Politico
12:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org or (215) 746-POEM
Hosted by: Dick Polman
Matthew Nussbaum is a White House reporter at POLITICO. He joined POLITICO in January, 2016 and covered the federal budget before hopping on the campaign trail in July, 2016 to cover GOP Vice Presidential nominee Mike Pence. He has covered the current administration since Election Day. Nussbaum previously worked or interned for the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Denver Post, and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He is a graduate of Yale University and a native of Haddonfield, New Jersey.
Speakeasy Open Night
7:30 PM in the Arts Cafe
Our student-run open mic night welcomes all kinds of readings, performances, spectacles, and happenings. Bring your poetry, your guitar, your dance troupe, your award-winning essay, or your stand up comedy to share.
A Conversation with Poet Yanko González
With Sebastián Figueroa and Dana Khromov
12:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
rsvp: email@example.com or (215) 746-POEM
Yanko González (1971) is a Chilean poet and Professor of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Universidad Austral de Chile. His books of poetry include Metales Pesados (1998), Alto Volta (2007), and Elabuga (2011). González has also co-edited the anthologies of poetry Carne fresca: poesia chilena reciente (2002) and Zurdos. Última poesía latinoamericana (2005). His last book, Elabuga, containing just 14 poems, was published as a large format book, and the end papers contain obituaries of its author, written by poet friends, against the backdrop of a grey concrete wall. His poetry combines ethnographic work and critical (self)reflections on the practice of both poetry and anthropology. He has received the Critic's Award in Chile for his book Alto Volta. His poems have been translated into French, English, and German.
J. Sebastián Figueroa is a graduate student in Hispanic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. His poems and essays have appeared in anthologies, magazines and journals from México and Chile. Dracma, his first collection of poetry, was published by Serifa Editores in Valdivia in 2016.
Dana Khromov is a writer, editor and translator currently working toward her PhD in Hispanic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She has worked at New Directions Publishing and Farrar, Straus and Giroux and her writing and translations have appeared in Asymptote Journal and Tin House magazine.
The Life and Music of Lou Reed
A conversation with Anthony DeCurtis
5:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
Sponsored by: Creative Ventures and RealArts@Penn
Join us for a discussion with Rolling Stone editor and Penn faculty member Anthony DeCurtis about the life and music of Lou Reed. In his new book Lou Reed: A Life, DeCurtis, who knew Reed and interviewed him extensively, tells the provocative story of Reed’s complex and chameleonic life. With unparalleled access to dozens of Reed’s friends, family, and collaborators, DeCurtis tracks Reed’s five-decade career through the accounts of those who knew him and through Reed’s most revealing testimony, his music. We travel deep into his defiantly subterranean world, enter the studio as the Velvet Underground record their groundbreaking work, and revel in Reed’s relationships with such legendary figures as Andy Warhol, David Bowie, and Laurie Anderson. Gritty, intimate, and unflinching, Lou Reed is an illuminating tribute to one of the most incendiary artists of our time.
Anthony DeCurtis is a distinguished lecturer in the creative writing program at Penn, as well as a contributing editor for Rolling Stone. He is the author of In Other Words and Rocking My Life Away and the cowriter of Clive Davis's autobiography, The Soundtrack of My Life, a New York Times bestseller. DeCurtis is a Grammy Award winner, and holds a PhD in American literature.
"Anthony DeCurtis was one of the few music critics Lou Reed read and whose company he enjoyed. After reading this sublime and subtle book, the mystery of Lou's respect for Anthony is revealed. Anthony is a great story teller, a writer's writer, turning pain into beauty the way Lou did in his songs."—Bono
"I am personally familiar with the depth, seriousness and sensitivity of Anthony DeCurtis's writing, and, of course, knew Lou Reed and felt the impact of his coruscating work. A brilliant artist has found a biographer with the insight to, as Lou said, "pass through fire" and be a definitive interpreter of both his music and his life.”—Sting
"When most people think of Lou Reed, they picture the black, rotting heart of rock and roll, full of dissonance, decadence and decay. But as Anthony DeCurtis makes clear in his new book, behind the image and the rumors, Lou was one thing: a writer, a man who spent his life telling the absolute, painful truth in his songs - the truth about himself, the scenes he observed, and the world at large. His words were so powerful that the Velvet Underground had to invent a new musical language to match them. I'm not the first musician to pledge allegiance to Lou and the Velvets, and I won't be the last. Read this book, and explore the f*cking genius that was Lou Reed."—Peter Buck, co-founder and lead guitarist of R.E.M.
a poetry reading by james sherry
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
Introduced by: Charles Bernstein
James Sherry is the author of 13 books of poetry and prose, most recently The Oligarch: Rewriting Machiavelli’s The Prince (Palgrave, 2017) and Entangled Bank (Chax, 2016), an book of environmental poems. In 1976, he began Roof Magazine, a magazine of innovative writing that ran quarterly for 10 issues and was notable for documenting the New York School and as a seminal publication of Language Writing, flarf poetry and ecopoetics. In 1977, he started the Segue Foundation, Inc. (seguefoundation.com) that has produced more than 10,000 literary and art events over nearly 40 years. In 1979, he started Roof Books (roofbooks.com), an imprint that has published more than 140 titles of innovative writing. He lives in New York City.
A conversation with Jason Zweig
5:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
rsvp required: firstname.lastname@example.org
Established by Stacey (W'85) and Jeff Weber, the annual Weber symposium strives to emphasize the importance of clarity in writing about finance and economics by featuring guest speakers whose work reflects this commitment to lucid prose.
Jason Zweig is the investing and personal-finance columnist for The Wall Street Journal. He is the author of The Devil’s Financial Dictionary, a satirical glossary of Wall Street (PublicAffairs Books, 2015), and Your Money and Your Brain, on the neuroscience of investing (Simon & Schuster, 2007). Zweig edited the revised edition of Benjamin Graham’s The Intelligent Investor (HarperCollins, 2003), the classic text that Warren Buffett has described as “by far the best book about investing ever written.” Zweig also wrote The Little Book of Safe Money (Wiley, 2009); co-edited Benjamin Graham: Building a Profession, an anthology of Graham’s essays (McGraw Hill, 2010); and assisted the Nobel Prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman in writing his book Thinking, Fast and Slow. From 1995 through 2008 Zweig was a senior writer for Money magazine; before joining Money, he was the mutual funds editor at Forbes. Zweig has also been a guest columnist for Time magazine and cnn.com. He has served as a trustee of the Museum of American Finance, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, and sits on the editorial boards of Financial History magazine and The Journal of Behavioral Finance. A graduate of Columbia College, Zweig lives in New York City.
Chili Cook off + Chopped
5:30 PM in the dining room
Our second annual Chili Cook Off (followed by a Chopped-style dessert round) is open to teams and individuals. To participate in the chili cook-off, please make a BIG BATCH of your best chili — all kinds of chili welcome — and bring it to the KWH (ready to eat!) by 5:30 PM for a community tasting. The two best chili-makers or chili-making teams will be elected by popular vote and will face-off immediately in a Chopped-style dessert throw-down in the KWH Kane-Wallace Kitchen.
IF YOU PLAN TO MAKE A CHILI, please email email@example.com to let us know. To help in your efforts, we’ll have a wide selection of chili and spices available in the KWH kitchen a week in advance. We’ll also happily reimburse chili makers up to $25 per batch (with receipt). And YES! you should encourage your chili-making friends to enter this competition.
a poetry reading by clark coolidge
6:00 pm in the Arts Cafe
introduced by: Ron Silliman
Experimental poet and jazz musician Clark Coolidge has written more than forty books, including Sound as Thought, which was chosen for the New American Poetry Series, and the recent 88 Sonnets. As Jake Marmer put it, “Nothing can prepare you for the experience of reading Clark Coolidge’s poetry.” Coolidge has been connected to both the New York School and the Language movement and uses unique syntax, sound patterns, and poetic forms to generate new forms of meaning. His work takes on topics as diverse as caves, geology, bebop, weather, Salvador Dalí, Jack Kerouac, grunge, and new movies. Coolidge currently lives in Petaluma, California.
Carmen Machado and Jenny Zhang
Cheryl J. Family Fiction reading
6:00 PM in the Arts Cafe
Carmen Maria Machado’s debut short story collection, Her Body and Other Parties, is forthcoming from Graywolf Press in 2017. She is a fiction writer, critic, and essayist whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in The New Yorker, Granta, Tin House, Guernica, Electric Literature, The Paris Review, AGNI, NPR, Gulf Coast, Los Angeles Review of Books, VICE, and elsewhere. Her stories have been reprinted in Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, Best Horror of the Year, Year’s Best Weird Fiction, and Best Women’s Erotica. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Michener-Copernicus Foundation, the Elizabeth George Foundation, the CINTAS Foundation, the Speculative Literature Foundation, the Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers’ Workshop, the University of Iowa, the Yaddo Corporation, Hedgebrook, and the Millay Colony for the Arts. She is the Artist in Residence at the University of Pennsylvania, and lives in Philadelphia with her partner.
Jenny Zhang is an American writer and poet based in Brooklyn, New York. She is the author of the poetry collection Dear Jenny, We Are All Find and a collection of poetry and essays,The Selected Jenny Zhang.