Public Lectures: Thursday, January 11
In Canon Lounge, Gladfelter

Thursday, January 11                                CHRISTINE KITANO:  Where the Persona Poem
9:30 AM                                                         Meets Research: Aesthetic and Historical Demands                                                           

In this lecture, we’ll consider how to balance both historical and aesthetic demands when writing persona poems, particularly when those personae are historically marginalized speakers. Such poems fuse both the personal and political. How does the poet utilize historical research to shape such a voice? How does the poet balance the necessities of presenting the historical contexts with creating a dramatic arc? How does the poet, in the span of a brief lyric or narrative sequence, create a full and responsive voice? Reference points will include Rita Dove’s Thomas and Beulah, Lee Ann Roripaugh’s Beyond Heart Mountain, and notes from Carl Dennis’s Poetry as Persuasion. Handouts will be provided.

 Thursday, January 11                                LESLEY NNEKA ARIMAH:  The Outcast as Central
10:45 AM                                                      Character: How Characters Who Break the Rules Become a Prism into Your World  

In this lecture we will explore the power of the outcast to fully render your world, whether that world is realistic or fantastic (but especially fantastic). The term “outcast” as deployed here can take many forms, from characters excluded for minor social flubs to characters fighting to bring down entire systems. The character’s goal isn’t the point, but the manner in which they move through their world to accomplish it. Most likely texts: “Somebody’s Baby” by Diane Cook. Borne by Jeff VanderMeer, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke, The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker, and Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel.

Public Readings by Graduating Students

Thursday, January 11—Fellowship Hall, behind Ransom Chapel, 8:15 p.m.
Kate Kaplan, Robin Rosen Chang, Kate Lister Campbell, Shannon Winston

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