Audio (courtesy of Rachel Zucker): Poets Writing Whiteness Panel
This panel presents four poets whose work has explicitly confronted whiteness, moderated by The Racial Imaginary Institute (TRII) member Monica Youn. TRII brings together artists and thinkers to mark, challenge, and beset white dominance, to make visible what has been presented as inevitable so that we can transform our imaginings of race. We hope to catalyze other writers and artists to reimagine our racial pathologies, to scrutinize not only obvious bigotry but also our own complicity.
Moderator: Monica Youn’s book Blackacre won the William Carlos Williams Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and Kingsley Tufts Award and longlisted for the National Book Award. Her previous book Ignatz was a finalist for the National Book Award. She teaches at Princeton.
Sharon Olds is most recently the author of Odes, and Stag’s Leap, recipient of the Pulitzer Prize and the T.S Eliot Prize (UK). She teaches in the Graduate Program in Creative Writing at New York University.
Shane McCrae is the author of, most recently, In the Language of My Captor, winner of the 2018 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Poetry, and The Gilded Auction Block, and has received a Lannan Literary Award, a Whiting Writer’s Award, and an NEA fellowship. He teaches at Columbia University in New York.
Natalie Scenters-Zapico is the author of The Verging Cities, and the forthcoming Lima :: Limón. A professor of literature at Bennington College, she has won awards and fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, PEN America, and CantoMundo.
Joy Katz is the author of three poetry books and many essays. Her new manuscript, White: An Abstract, documents every minute of whiteness in her life. She collaborates on social practice art, including, recently, OverHear/OverHere, live music for shift workers. She lives and teaches in Pittsburgh.