Reimagining the Poet-Critic: Practice, Pedagogy, Poetics

Reimagining the Poet-Critic: Practice, Pedagogy, Poetics

The Poetry & Politics Research Cluster presents:

Reimagining the Poet-Critic: Practice, Pedagogy, Poetics

This conference invites participation in a series of dialogues about the role of the poet-scholar. As a practitioner of poetry or other “imaginative” writing and more theoretical or critical work, the poet-critic or poet-scholar works both inside and outside the university. How do these two activities come together to affect the reading and writing practices of poet-critics and their readership? Since many poet-critics are read within college classrooms or are themselves professors or teachers, we are interested in the pedagogical implications of their writing practices. The conference is an occasion for dialogue across genres, disciplines, readerships and pedagogical practices and focuses on the ways writing practices can encourage creative and critical thinking.

The conference consists of six panels with three papers and invited respondents; a pedagogy colloquium and short paper workshop; and poetry readings. Respondents will consist of invited guests and UCSC faculty.


Daytime Panels: Humanities 210, UCSC
Evening Poetry Readings: Felix Culpa Gallery, Downtown Santa Cruz

9:00-9:30am — Welcome

9:30-11:00am — Panel 1: Historicizing the Poet as Intellectual

11:00-12:00pm — Lunch and Informal Poetry Reading

12:00-1:30pm — Panel 2: Poetics and Reading Methodologies

2:00-3:30pm — Poetry in the Classroom: Pedagogy Colloquium and Short Paper Workshop

4:00-5:30pm — Panel 3: Poetic Epistemologies and Alternative Forms of Scholarship

7:30-9:00pm — Poetry Reading at Felix Culpa Gallery, 107 Elm Street, Santa Cruz

Guest Respondents:

CRAIG DWORKIN is the author of Signature-Effects (Ghos-Ti, 1997), Reading the Illegible (Northwestern, 2003), Dure (Cuneiform, 2004), Strand (Roof, 2005), and Parse (Atelos, 2008), and the editor of, among others, The Sound of Poetry/The Poetry of Sound (Chicago, 2009). He teaches at the University of Utah and curates two online archives: Eclipse and The UbuWeb Anthology of Conceptual Writing.

VANESSA PLACE is a writer and lawyer. She is the author of Dies: A Sentence (Le Figues, 2005), La Medusa (Fiction Collective 2, 2008), Statement of Fact (Publishing the Unpublishable/Ubu, 2008), Notes on Conceptualisms with Robert Fitterman (Ugly Duckling, 2009). Other work has appeared in Northwest Review, Northridge Review, Film Comment, Contemporary Literary Criticism, 4th Street: A Poetry Bimonthly, LA Weekly Literary Supplement, Five Fingers Review, and n/Oulipo. She is a co-founder of Les Figues Press.

SINA QUEYRAS is the author of Slip (ECW, 2001), Teethmarks (Nightwood, 2004), Lemon Hound (Coach House, 2006), and Expressway (Coach House, forthcoming). Lemon Hound won the Lambda and the Pat Lowther awards for poetry. She is also the editor of Open Field: 30 Contemporary Canadian Poets (Persea, 2005). She teaches at Concordia University in Montreal, is a contributing editor for the online literary journal Drunken Boat, and maintains Lemon Hound, a blog of contemporary arts and letters.

JULIANA SPAHR has published three books of poetry, including Response (Sun & Moon, 1995), This Connection of Everyone with Lungs (California, 2005), and Well Then There Now (Salt, forthcoming). She is the author of a book of criticism, Everybody’s Autonomy: Connective Reading and Collective Identity (Alabama, 2001), and a memoir, The Transformation (Atelos, 2007). She is an Associate Professor at Mills College.

For more information, contact Jessica Beard at or Andrea Quaid at

Co-sponsored by the Center for Cultural Studies, the Puknat Endowment, and the Literature Department.