Ways of Reading: Bernadette Mayer and the New York School

image from Rosemary Mayer's Ways of Attaching Exhibition

Join the Bristol Poetry Institute and Spike Island for a conversation and a collaborative writing session dedicated to the New York School poets and the works of Bernadette Mayer.

Date and time
Spike Island 133 Cumberland Road Bristol BS1 6UX

Book your free place here

Bernadette Mayer is an influential avant-garde writer associated with the New York School poets of the mid-20th century. Like her artist sister Rosemary Mayer, she garnered visibility during the second-wave feminist movement in the US. Mayer is known for her experimental poetic forms and narrative structures akin to streams of consciousness, which examine the complexities of gender and sexuality within the intimate interactions and attachments of family life.

A conversation between Dr Rebecca Kosick, Co-Director of the Bristol Poetry Institute, and Dr Rosa Campbell, Associate Lecturer in Modern and Contemporary Literature at the University of St Andrews, is followed by the collective reading of selected texts by Bernadette Mayer.

Ways of Reading is organised in collaboration with Spike Island and hosted on the occasion of Rosemary Mayer’s solo exhibition Ways of Attaching.

The BPI Alejandra Pizarnik Reading Group

Update: this reading group has been moved to April 2022.

The Bristol Poetry Institute is looking forward to hosting this reading group addressing the works of Argentine poet Alejandra Pizarnik, to take place in September. Please see the poster below for more information or reach out to the organiser, Dr Laura Jansen.

THE ALEJANDRA PIZARNIK READING GROUP Faculty of Arts Organised by Laura Jansen Under the auspices of the Bristol Poetry Institute Fridays 3:30-5pm September 3, 10, 19 and 24, 2021 With the participation of poets Alice Oswald & Phoebe Giannisi ‘There is an aura of almost legendary, classical prestige that surrounds the life and work of Alejandra Pizarnik.’ César Aira (1998) During her short life, Alejandra published eight small books that have earned her a fundamental place in poetry in Spanish. Her forerunners were classical Greek and Roman poets, Arab-Andalusian poets of the Middle Ages [...] Rimbaud and the French surrealists. Eventually, her poetic vocabulary became unique: echoes of [these traditions] can be heard in the background of her writing, but they are never allowed a full presence. Alberto Manguel (2015) Postgraduates and Postdoctoral researchers interested in twentieth-century writers are warmly invited to attend this online interdisciplinary reading group, hosted by Laura Jansen of the Department of Classics and Ancient History in partnership with the Bristol Poetry Institute. Our focus this year is on the oeuvre of Argentine poet Alejandra Pizarnik (Buenos Aires 1936-72), whose writings include poems, diaries, correspondence and critical essays. We will be exploring a selection of texts from works such as Diana’s Tree/ Árbol de Diana (1962), Works and Nights/ Los trabajos y noches (1965), Extracting the Stone of Madness/ Extracción de la piedra de locura (1968), and A Tradition of Rupture: Selected Critical Writings (2019). The texts will be circulated in English, while readings of short poems during the sessions will be performed in English, as well as in Spanish and French, the two languages in which Pizarnik wrote. Participants are expected to commit to regular online attendance of the four sessions. The group will meet on Fridays, 3:30-5pm, starting on September 3, 2021. It is expected that the reading group will be predominantly for postgraduate and postdoctoral scholars, although senior scholars are also very welcome. All those interested in attending should get in touch with the organiser by July 1, 2021: laura.jansen@bristol.ac.uk