Sunday, January 24, 2010

95 Cent Skool: A Seminar on Poetry Writing and Social Practice

The 95 Cent Skool is a 6 day long experimental seminar that will be
offered in Oakland, California, July 26-31, 2010. It is convened by
Joshua Clover and Juliana Spahr. It will explore the possibilities of
poetry writing as part of a larger social practice, at a distance from
the economic and professional expectations of institutions. We believe
a dozen people sitting around a table can’t ruin poetry, but that
costs, professional context, mythologies of individual genius, and
client/service-based models can — and in our own experiences teaching
in pay-to-play writing programs, often do.

Our concerns in these six days begin with the assumption that poetry
has a role to play in the larger political and intellectual sphere of
contemporary culture, and that any poetry which subtracts itself from
such engagements is no longer of interest. “Social poetics” is not a
settled category, and does not necessarily refer to poetry espousing a
social vision. It simply assumes that the basis of poetry is not
personal expression or the truth of any given individual, but shared
social struggle.

The 6 days will feature:
• Morning discussion groups lead by Juliana and Joshua
• Two guest speakers: one on the political economy and one on ecology
• Afternoon group and/or collaborative writing sessions
• Dinners and drinks at a nearby bar

The 6 days will not feature:
• Workshops led by a “master poet”
• Agents or editors who will advise your work into publication
• A Richard Wilbur Celebration Night
• Instruction in reciting poetry to bring out the emotional content of the poem

The final program will be available later in the Spring.

Each participant will be asked to contribute up to 1% of annual gross
income as their 95 cents exclusively towards operating expenses. The
workshop leaders and as many other organizers as possible will donate
their time. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. Email us if
you’ve got questions about how much you can pay. We will also help in
finding free housing for any participants in need.

The program is open to any interested participant with any level of
prior engagement with poetry. This program is not affiliated with any
institution of higher education and no transferrable institutional
credit will be offered. There is no application fee, but space is
limited. Please send a note indicating interest and experience to

Please feel encouraged to re/post this listing to your blog or
otherwise redistribute. If you would like to receive further
information about the 95 Cent Skool, please email the address above,
or join the 95 Cent Skool facebook group:
The 95 Cent Skool will happen with the support of Small Press Traffic
and 'A 'A Arts.

Thank you very much,

the 95¢ Skoolers —

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