State of the Union: Poetry of Witness
a poetry reading with Janani Balasubramanian & Camille Rankine
December 13, Tuesday
6 to 8 pm
The term “poetry of witness” refers to poems written in “conditions of social and historical extremity” (Carolyn Forché). This event presents writers Camille Rankine and Janani Balasubramanian, who write poetry of witness in response to their experience of America. Q & A and book-signing to follow the reading.
Jefferson Market Library
Willa Cather Room, First Floor
425 Avenue of the Americas
Janani Balasubramanian is a writer of speculative fiction and poetry whose art and editorial work have been featured in The New Yorker, Guernica, Creative Time Reports, The New Inquiry, and more. They’ve presented work at 160+ stages across North America and Europe, including The Public Theater, MOMA, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Janani is currently working on Sleeper—a dystopian trilogy about sleep, dreams, and physics.
Camille Rankine’s first book of poetry, Incorrect Merciful Impulses, was published in January by Copper Canyon Press. She is the author of the chapbook Slow Dance with Trip Wire, selected by Cornelius Eady for the Poetry Society of America’s 2010 New York Chapbook Fellowship, and a recipient of a 2010 “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize. Her poetry has appeared in Atlas Review, American Poet, The Baffler, Boston Review, Denver Quarterly, Gulf Coast, Octopus Magazine, Paper Darts, Phantom Books, A Public Space, Tin House, and elsewhere. She serves as chair for the Executive Committee of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts and the board of The Poetry Project, teaches at Columbia University, and lives in New York City.
The reading is free of charge and open to the public. Seating is limited. General-admission seating begins at 5:45 pm.
Facebook event page here.