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Scattered Chapters, Livid Hieroglyphs: Anthropology, the American West, and Experimental Poetry

Edgar Garcia discusses the role that several Bay Area poets, writers and subversives played in the development of anthropology as a discipline.

   

 

Date: Thursday, August 23, 2012

Time: 5:30pm doors open, 6:15pm program begins

Where: Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, 505 Montgomery Street, Suite 800, San Francisco CA 94111

Cost: $10 YCSF members, $15 non-members (includes drinks and hors d'oeuvres)

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Edgar Garcia, PhD candidate at Yale University and recipient of the inaugural YCSF Research Fellowship, presents groundbreaking research on the development of anthropology as an academic discipline in the American West, and the forgotten role that several experimental poets, writers and subversives played in the growth of this discipline. In his seminar he will focus on figures peripheral to the UC Berkeley department of anthropology, such as Jaime de Angulo, the wild Coyote shaman of Big Sur, whom Ezra Pound called "the American Ovid;" and Robert H. Barlow, the "weird" fiction author, poet and crack linguist of Mesoamerica; as well as more recognizable Bay Area figures such as Robert Duncan and Jack Spicer; in addition to Hart Crane and Charles Olson—all of whom tested the boundaries of the new discipline of anthropology from a periphery of poetic experimentalism. He will discuss how contemporaneous understandings and misunderstandings of indigenous hieroglyphs and languages inspired responses and technical innovations in the English-language world of poetry that resonate to this day.

Edgar Garcia's poetry, translations and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in a number of publications, including The Antioch Review, Berkeley Poetry Review, Damn the Caesars, Jacket2, Los Angeles Review of Books, MAKE Magazine, Mandorla and Sous les Pavés. Author of Mayan Texts: A Galactic Birth Canal (Burnt Water Press) and Boundary Loot/OHMAXAC (forthcoming, Punch Press), he is also a writer and editor at Hydra Magazine and co-curates the blog nagualli.blogspot.com. He is completing a PhD in American Literature at Yale University. His current research in the San Francisco Bay Area has been supported by a fellowship from the Yale Club of San Francisco and the Yale Graduate School.

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Questions? Contact Ken Yamaguchi (ken [at] knowledgesynthesis.com).


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