Center of Mexican American Studies
Center of Mexican American Studies

The Republic of Poetry: Reading and Discussion Featuring Martín Espada

Thu, October 15, 2009 | Texas Union, Quadrangle Room, 3.304

7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

The Republic of Poetry: Reading and Discussion Featuring Martín Espada

As part of the Distinguished Visiting Lecturers series of the UT Humanities Institute, Martín Espada will be doing a special poetry reading that will address this year's HI seminar theme, "Intellectual Life at Times of Crisis."  Espada will read and discuss, among others, a number of his many "homage" poems dedicated to poets and activists who have confronted moments of terrible political repression and injustice.  

Some of these poems--on Pablo Neruda, Raúl Zurita and Víctor Jara--will come from The Republic of Poetry, a 2006 book that reflects on Chile both in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11/73 coup and in its post-Pinochet present. Others--on Clemente Soto Vélez and other Puerto Rican poet-activists--will come from his 2003 comprehensive anthology, Alabanza.  Espada will be reading some new poems as well.

Martín Espada has published sixteen books in all as a poet, editor, essayist and translator, including two collections of poems last year: Crucifixion in the Plaza de Armas (Smokestack, 2008), released in England, and La Tumba de Buenaventura Roig (Terranova, 2008), a bilingual selection of his poetry published in Puerto Rico that I edited and prologued. The Republic of Poetry (Norton, 2006) received the Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Imagine the Angels of Bread (Norton, 1996) won an American Book Award and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Sponsored by the UT Humanities Institute, the Center for Mexican American Studies, the Deparment of Spanish and Portuguese, the Department of English, the Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies, and the Program in Comparative Literature.

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