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Poetry Reading Series – Paisley Rekdal
March 30, 7:00 pm-8:00 pm
Have you ever read poetry that uses fieldwork and archives to deal with important social and political concerns? Come hear three acclaimed poets who employ research and reporting to grapple with such timely issues as immigration, identity, cultural appropriation, racism and the military- and prison-industrial complexes. Their works intersect with the social sciences, drawing on anthropology, sociology, history, media studies, education, psychology, political science and law.
- Thursday, Feb. 16, Susan Briante
- Tuesday, Feb. 28, Nomi Stone
- Thursday, March 30, Paisley Rekdal
All readings are free and open to the public.
The series is sponsored by the Department of English and Creative Writing at The University of Tulsa, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities and the Tulsa Artist Fellowship.
Paisley Rekdal’s recent multi-media piece, West: A Translation, was commissioned for the 150th anniversary of the transcontinental railroad’s completion. Incorporating translations, archival research, essays, poems, videos and images, the work responds to a Chinese elegy carved into the walls of the Angel Island Immigration Station in San Francisco Bay, where Chinese migrants were detained, sometimes for up to 22 months. West: A Translation is a sweeping meditation on the railroad’s cultural impact on America, its environmental consequences, the experience of the immigrants and minorities who built the rails, the Chinese Exclusion Act and more. Her recent book of essays, Appropriate: A Provocation (2021), addresses cultural appropriation, authorial privilege, whiteness and empathy. The Los Angeles Times writes, “Rekdal is a poet of observation and history, one who carefully weighs the consequences of time.”
Paisley Rekdal is the author of more than 10 books of poetry and nonfiction, most recently Nightingale: Poems (Copper Canyon Press, 2019) and Appropriate: A Provocation (W.W. Norton, 2021). A two-time finalist of the Kingsley Tufts Prize, Rekdal has garnered fellowships from the NEA, the Fulbright Foundation, and the Guggenheim Foundation. She guest edited Best American Poetry 2020, and her own work is forthcoming from or has appeared in The New Yorker, American Poetry Review, The New Republic, Poetry, The Kenyon Review and The New York Times Magazine. From 2017 to 2022, she served as Utah’s Poet Laureate. She is distinguished professor of literature at the University of Utah.