Common Ground#798

Publishing-in-Transit: Kelly Writers House

Featuring Al Filreis, Herman Beavers, Julia Bloch, and Cole Swensen


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Kelly Writers House Founder Al Filreis, Advisory Board Member Herman Beavers, and writer Julia Bloch join Rail contributor Cole Swensen for a conversation and reading.

In this talk

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Al Filreis

Photo of Al Filreis
Al Filreis has published numerous books and articles on the literary politics of modern poetry and painting, and the literary and cultural politics of the 1950s. His most recent book is Counter-revolution of the Word: The Conservative Attack on Modern Poetry, 1945-1960 (University of North Carolina Press). Filreis has won nearly every teaching award Penn gives and was named Pennsylvania Professor of the Year in 2000 by the Carnegie Foundation. He is Director of the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing and founder and Faculty Director of the Kelly Writers House. With Charles Bernstein, he co-founded and co-directs PennSound. He is the Publisher of Jacket2 magazine. He is a member of several boards and is Vice President of the Board of Trustees of Frost Valley.

Herman Beavers

Photo of Herman Beavers
Herman Beavers is the Julie Beren Platt and Marc E. Platt President’s Distinguished Professor of English and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he’s taught since 1989. He teaches courses in 20th and 21st Century African American literature and creative writing. His poems have appeared in publications including The Langston Hughes Colloquy and American Arts Quarterly. His poems and stories are anthologized in Who Speaks for America, Show Us Your Papers, Best Philadelphia Stories 2020, and elsewhere. He has published two scholarly monographs, Wrestling Angels into Song: the Fictions of Ernest J Gaines and James A. McPherson and Geography and the Political Imaginary in the Novels of Toni Morrison as well as three chapbooks.

Julia Bloch

Photo of Julia Bloch
Photo by Ryan Collerd
Julia Bloch is the author of three books of poetry, most recently The Sacramento of Desire, and of essays on modern and contemporary poetry in a number of journals and anthologies including Journal of Modern Literature, Amodern, the MLA volume Teaching Modernist Women’s Writing in English, Tripwire, and Syndicate. She has been awarded a Pew Fellowship from the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage, the Joseph Henry Jackson Award from the San Francisco Foundation, and a Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching at the University of Pennsylvania, where she is Director of the Creative Writing Program and coeditor of Jacket2.

Cole Swensen

A black and white photo of poet Cole Swensen.
Photo by Anthony Hayward
Poet Cole Swensen is the author of 17 volumes of poetry and a collection of critical essays, Noise That Stays Noise. A book of hybrid poem-essays, Art in Time, was published by Nightboat in 2021. A former Guggenheim Fellow, she has been a finalist for the National Book Award and has been awarded the Iowa Poetry Prize, the SF State Poetry Center Book Award, and the National Poetry Series. She has also translated over 20 volumes of poetry, prose, and art criticism from French and won the 2004 PEN USA Award in Literary Translation.

❤️ 🌈 We'd like to thank the The Terra Foundation for American Art for making these daily conversations possible, and for their support of our growing archive.