Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Creative Speaking (Syllabus)

Course description

The following course is intended to present a variety of ways of thinking about the relationship between writing and orality, with special attention to composition methods generated through (constrained) embodiment, conversation, performance, and extemporization (improvised speech and utterance). As will be discussed at length throughout the class, the relationship of speech to writing is by no means simple, mediated as it is by technologies of technical reproduction (typewriter and tape recorder in particular, but more recently text messaging, Skype, and other technologies that extend from Web 2.0). My hope is that by the end of the semester you may be able to see the problem through a variety of aspects. It is also my hope that you may find your own entry point into the problem as artists, writers, critics, scholars, and citizens. This means exploring and extending the techniques of composition presented by the texts we encounter in class. It also means trying to form a critical vocabulary through which we may approach a common set of texts.

Required texts

-- Course packet

-- Books*

Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee
Dana Ward’s This Can’t Be Life

*I recommend you purchase books online via Bookfinder (www.bookfinder.com) or Small Press Distribution (www.spdbooks.org).

--Some recommendations for further reading:

Of Grammatology, Jacques Derrida
Orality and Literacy, Walter Ong
Gramaphone, Film, Typewriter, Friedrich Kittler
The Muse Learns to Write, Eric A. Havelock
Close Listening, ed. Charles Bernstein
The Visible Word, Johanna Drucker
Black Riders, Jerome McGann
Sound States, ed. Adelaide Morris
My Way, Charles Bernstein
Uncreative Writing, Kenneth Goldsmith
Before Meaning, Steve McCaffrey
Imagining Language, ed. McCaffery and Rasula
Discrepant Engagement, Nathaniel Mackey
In the Break, Fred Moten
The Birthmark, Susan Howe
A Voice and Nothing More, Mladen Dolar
Audio-vision: Sound on Screen, Michel Chion
The Queen's Throat, Wayne Koestenbaum
Concerto for the Left Hand, Michael Davidson
Bottom: on Shakespeare, Louis Zukofsky
Writing the Illegible, Craig Dworkin
On the Camera Arts and Consecutive Matters, Hollis Frampton
HEATH (Plagiarism/Outsource), Tan Lin
Frank O’Hara: the Poetics of Coterie, Lytle Shaw
UbuWeb: www.ubuweb.com
PennSound: writing.upenn.edu/pennsound/


January 12 Introductions; creative speaking gallery

--Assignment: Charles Olson’s “Projective Verse,” Frank O’Hara’s "Personism," a page from Louis Zukofsky’s “A”, selected poems



"Projective Verse"

Emily Dickinson’s “We don’t cry – Tim and I”

William Carlos Williams’ “This is Just to Say”


Robert Creeley’s “I Know a Man”

Charles Olson’s “I, Maximus of Gloucester, to You”

Frank O’Hara’s “Metaphysical Poem”

“Having a Coke With You”

Amiri Baraka’s “Low Coups”


Bernadette Mayer’s “Sonnet” [“You jerk you didn’t call me”]

Fred Moten'a “Here It Is”

Tracie Morris’ “Slave Sho to Video aka Black but Beautiful”

19 “A Voice Blown from Print”: Projective Poetics & Personism
--Assignment: Charles Reznikoff’s Testimony selection and Langston Hughes' "Montage of a Dream Deferred," selection from Lorenzo Thomas’ Don't Deny My Name

26 Witnessing Speech
--Assignment: Allen Ginsberg’s “Wichita Vortex Sutra” and Hannah Weiner’s Clairvoyant Journals selection (http://libraries.ucsd.edu/speccoll/m504/5/index.html), with Michael Davidson’s “Technologies of Presence” (from Sound States, ed. A. Morris)

February 2 Radical Journalism
--Assignment: Gertrude Stein’s “Portraits and Repetition,” David Antin’s “how long is the present” (from Tunings), and John Cage’s “Lecture on Nothing” (from Silence)

--1-2 page midterm abstracts to be submitted

9 The Lecture as Compositional Practice & Performance
--Assignment: Gallery of New York poets TBA

16 Composition as Conversation part 1
--Assignment: Kamau Brathwaite’s “History of the Voice” (from Roots), Brathwaite’s “Letter Sycorax” (from Middle Passages), The Anthology of Rap selection (ed. Bradley & Dubois), Dub Reggae gallery TBA

23 midterms due; Auritures
--Assignment: Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee, Susan Howe’s “The Articulation of Sound Forms in Time” selection, Myung Mi Kim’s Dura selection, Robert Kocik’s Re-English selection

March 1 Re-Speaking
--Assignment: Steve Benson’s “Views of Communist China” (from The Kenning Anthology of Poets Theatre) with Suzanne Stein’s “A Hole in Space”

8 Spring Break

15 Composition as Conversation part II
--Assignment: Jordan Scott’s Blert selection, Larry Eigner selection TBA, Michael Davidson on Larry Eigner from Concerto for the Left Hand

22 Embodiment, Speech Disfluency, Disability, Built Environment
--Assignment: Fiona Templeton’s ME DEAD and “Speaking For Performance / Writing With the Voice”

29 Creative Speaking: A Visit with Fiona Templeton
--Assignment: Dana Ward’s This Can’t Be Life

April 5 This Can’t Be Life: A Visit with Dana Ward
--Assignment: TBA

12 last class; final work due; The Acoustic Uncanny, Transcriptions (from Analogue to Digital)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Marathon reading of The Making of Americans (at Triple Canopy)

In celebration of the opening of 155 Freeman, Triple Canopy is pleased to present a marathon reading of Gertrude Stein’s enormously long and allegedly unreadable novel The Making of Americans: Being a History of a Family’s Progress. This weekend, starting on Friday at 7 p.m., an invited list of New York–based artists, writers, publishers, scholars, and other collaborators will gather in Greenpoint to perform the entirety of Stein’s text in a continuous read-in, expected to last 48 hours, more or less.

Multifarious Array Winter/Spring Schedule

Winter/Spring 2012 line-up

@Pete's Candy Store
709 Lorimer Street
Williamsburg, Brooklyn


1/6-Noah Eli Gordon, Sommer Browning, Harmony Holiday, and Steven Zultanski
1/20-Josef Kaplan, Brian Ang, Laura Elrick
2/3-Kendra Grant Malone, Matthew Savoca, Brett Price
2/17-Timothy Donnelly, Anselm Berrigan, Camille Roy
3/16-Michael Robins, Adam Clay, Ada Limon
3/23-Anelise Chen, Andrew Levy, Ken Walker
4/6-Michael Robbins, Angelo Nikolopoulos, Carley Moore
4/20-Todd Colby, Kate Schapira, Leigh Stein
5/4-Sam Truitt, Carter Edwards, Frank Sherlock
5/11-Eric Baus, Cynthia Sailers, Stacy Szymaszek
5/18-Shonni Enelow, Sasha Fletcher, Joseph Bradshaw
5/25-No, Dear Magazine Reading
6/1-David Brazil, Sara Larsen, Robert Kocik

Friday, January 13, 2012

THE HOLE, a Gathering (at St. Mark's Poetry Project)

Friday, February 10, 2012
10:00 pm

Reframing the “book launch,” Thom Donovan and Brett Price offer a night of consumption, conversation, reflection, and performance around Donovan’s book, The Hole (Displaced Press, 2012). As Donovan has written to participants about the event: “I would not like to read from the book, so much as I would use the book’s appearance as an occasion for conversation around its contents, as well as an opportunity for friends, colleagues, and loved ones to gather.” Participants include Melissa Buzzeo, CAConrad, Rob Halpern, Brenda Iijima, Madhu Kaza, Robert Kocik, Dorothea Lasky, Andrew Levy, C.J. Martin, ElĂ©na Rivera, Eleni Stecopoulos, Brian Whitener, Tyrone Williams, and others.