Eco-Poetics with Leonard Schwartz (Seminar)
The relationship between nature and history is complex, so much so that the space between nature and the human, being and language, may not even be measurable. Yet the environmental imperatives of our moment are the decisive ones. Is the poem mimetic of nature, or a function of it? How could such a seemingly noble enterprise as “environmentalism”‘ or “protecting nature” be problematic? How have powerful imaginaries and narratives served to dangerously simplify how environmental problems and their solutions are conceptualized? What poems and poets actualize an imaginary of nature with ecological intelligence? Eco-poetics with Leonard Schwartz will explore creative and critical approaches to language, with a view to reframing our understanding of the relationship between nature and history. Possible readings together that day might be drawn from Chilean poet Raul Zurita’s Inri, Kamau Brathwaite’s “Namsetoura”, Brenda Iijima’s Eco-Language Reader, Jed Rasula’s This Compost, Camille Dungy’s Black Nature, and, curiously, Sappho’s fragments as translated by Anne Carson in If Not, Winter.
* Limited to 10 participants.
* All participants will receive free copies of three books related to the topic: Moss & Silver by Jure Detela (a Slovenian eco-activist and poet); Before Lyricism by Eleni Vakalo (tr. Karen Emmerich), which contains the long poem “Plant Upbringing”; and Phil Cordelli’s Manual of Woody Plants
* Members receive a fifteen percent discount on all seminars — use your membership discount code at checkout.
Leonard Schwartz is the author of numerous collections of poetry, including, Heavy Sublimation, IF, At Element, and The Tower of Diverse Shores, all from Talisman House, The New Babel, from The University of Arkansas Press, The Library of Seven Readings from Ugly Duckling Presse, and Salamander: A Bestiary, from Chax Press. His poems have appeared in a wide variety of journals and periodicals, including Harper’s, Conjunctions, The Brooklyn Rail, the Literary Review, To, Mandorla, New American Writing, Verse, American Letters & Commentary, and Jacket. He has won awards in poetry from The National Endowment for the Arts, The Academy of American Poets, and from the New York State Council on the Arts, and he has read from his work as an invited guest at poetry festivals and venues in France, Sweden, Romania, Estonia Turkey, China, Singapore, Buenos Aires and Peru, among other places. Schwartz hosts and produces the radio program Cross Cultural Poetics and teaches poetics at The Evergreen State College in Washington, as well as in Columbia University’s MFA program.
Ugly Duckling Presse
232 Third Street, E303, Brooklyn, New York 11215