Why Are (Some) White (Conceptual) Poets So Mean?

I’ve probably read a couple of dozen articles and posts about this subject in recent weeks, but this one really struck more of a chord with me. And so I’m reblogging it.

Craig Santos Perez

Berkeley

The 1965 Berkeley Poetry Conference brought together many major American poets of that era. Imagine New American Poetry: 1945-1960 come to drunken life.And just like that famed anthology,the Berkeley conference featured mostly white poets.

Note: the word “conference” comes from the Latin root, “confere,” which means “expensive group hug.”

The roster for the 2015 Berkeley Poetry Conference (commemorating the 50th anniversary) included a multicultural list of very talented poets. However, the organizers made two fatal mistakes: 1) they invited Vanessa Place and 2) they did not invite me.

Place has been performing conceptual poems that traffic in racist and racialized content related to African American experiences. A similar act by another conceptual poet, Kenneth Goldsmith, included performing the text of Michael Brownʻs autopsy.

Note: Some of my best friends are white avant-garde poets.

Many poets were hurt, annoyed, and upset by these conceptual poetic acts. An online…

View original post 1,125 more words

Advertisements
This entry was posted in General. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s