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The Chilean Flag by Elvira Hernández, translated from the Spanish by Alec Schumacher, has been longlisted for ALTA’s National Translation Award in poetry! This year’s judges describe it thus:

La bandera de Chile is a legendary work that we are all very lucky to finally be able to read in Alec Schumacher’s beautiful English translation. Written in 1981, this book pays homage to the victims of the Pinochet regime. But it’s the formal and tonal qualities of this homage that are, perhaps, most impressive: both playful and mournful, witty and political, tender and sharp, the work continues to defy expectations. It is both a collage of unrelated fragments and a very unified, almost choral project. It redefines the idea of nationhood to such an extent that by the end of the book, the flag becomes a gag in the mouth of that nation. This translation is extraordinary.

In case you missed it, you can now watch the online launch event/reading with Urayoán Noel and Legna Rodríguez Iglesias, introduced by Daniel Borzutzky. It was a blast.

Also, Kenning Editions’ Vimeo page features other readings, including the summer 2020 group reading with Ana Arzoumanian, Craig Dworkin, Alec Schumacher, Steven Zultanski, and Brian Kim Stefans, a set of readings to celebrate and launch Audre Lorde’s Dream of Europe, and selected works from the infamous festivals of poets theater in Chicago.

It’s all free, and it’s for you.

Kenning Editions presents a bilingual reading with Urayoán Noel and Legna Rodríguez Iglesias, to launch TÍTULO / TITLE, a book of poems by the Cuban poet, prose writer, and playwright Legna Rodríguez Iglesias, published for the first time in Spanish, and in English translation by Katherine M. Hedeen. Rodríguez Iglesias belongs to the so-called Generation Zero in Cuba, those born after 1970 and who publish after 2000. After the fall of European socialism, Generation Zero grew up with few opportunities and little future, and its poetry embodies the crisis. TÍTULO / TITLE  does so by affirming a poetics of ugliness—the quotidian ugliness of poverty. Material need signals spiritual need. In an experimental, asphyxiating rush of repetition and enjambment, TÍTULO / TITLE  chronicles separation, alienation, unease, madness, illness while it presents readers with a unique vision of queerness, humanity, poetry. None of it is exceptional. These poems do not fall back on exotifying stereotypes. Instead, they offer a critical perspective of all sides. There is a brilliant grayness to this poetry that rejects how Cubans are supposed to write their reality, on either side of the Gulf.

Legna Rodríguez Iglesias was born in 1984 in Camagüey, Cuba and now lives in Miami, where she writes a column for the online journal El Estornudo. Recent publications include My Favorite Girlfriend was a French Bulldog (a novel in fifteen stories, from McSweeney’s) and Miami Century Fox (poetry, from Akashic). Among her literary awards are the Centrifugados Prize for Younger Poets (Spain, 2019), the Paz Prize (the National Poetry Series, 2017), the Casa de las Américas Prize in Theater (Cuba, 2016), and the Julio Cortázar Ibero-American Short Story Prize (2011).

Urayoán Noel is a Puerto Rican poet, performer, translator, and critic. He has published seven books of poetry and the study In Visible Movement: Nuyorican Poetry from the Sixties to Slam, and he has been a finalist for the National Translation Award and the Best Translated Book Award for his translations of Latin American poetry. Noel lives in the Bronx and teaches at New York University.

Daniel Borzutzky introduces. Borzutzky’s books and chapbooks include, among others, Lake Michigan, In the Murmurs of the Rotten Carcass Economy, Memories of my Overdevelopment, and The Book of Interfering Bodies. He has translated Raúl Zurita’s The Country of Planks and Song for his Disappeared Love, and Jaime Luis Huenún’s Port Trakl. Borzutzky was Chief Editor of Kenning Editions from 2017-2020.

September 13, 2020, 4:00 PM EST.

Register to attend the reading here. It is free. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. Be sure to download the Zoom app.

Brand new!

TÍTULO / TITLE is a book of poems by the Cuban poet, prose writer, and playwright Legna Rodríguez Iglesias, published here for the first time in Spanish, and in English translation by Katherine M. Hedeen. Rodríguez Iglesias belongs to the so-called Generation Zero in Cuba, those born after 1970 and who publish after 2000. After the fall of European socialism, Generation Zero grew up with few opportunities and little future, and its poetry embodies the crisis. TÍTULO / TITLE  does so by affirming a poetics of ugliness—the quotidian ugliness of poverty. Material need signals spiritual need. In an experimental, asphyxiating rush of repetition and enjambment, TÍTULO / TITLE  chronicles separation, alienation, unease, madness, illness while it presents readers with a unique vision of queerness, humanity, poetry. None of it is exceptional. These poems do not fall back on exotifying stereotypes. Instead, they offer a critical perspective of all sides. There is a brilliant grayness to this poetry that rejects how Cubans are supposed to write their reality, on either side of the Gulf.

“Legna Rodríguez Iglesias is one of the most celebrated Cuban poets of the post-millennium generation. By turns outspoken, funny, dark, and strange, the highly associative poems in this book bristle with a queer energy, and they gleefully desacralize both Cuba and the U.S. On the surface, Rodríguez Iglesias’s writing is defiantly anti-poetic, yet Hedeen’s translations carefully convey the nested quality of the Spanish originals: love poems and/as political satire (or is it the other way around?).”—Urayoán Noel

Legna Rodríguez Iglesias was born in 1984 in Camagüey, Cuba and now lives in Miami, where she writes a column for the online journal El Estornudo. Recent publications include My Favorite Girlfriend was a French Bulldog (a novel in fifteen stories, from McSweeney’s) and Miami Century Fox (poetry, from Akashic). Among her literary awards are the Centrifugados Prize for Younger Poets (Spain, 2019), the Paz Prize (the National Poetry Series, 2017), the Casa de las Américas Prize in Theater (Cuba, 2016), and the Julio Cortázar Ibero-American Short Story Prize (2011).

Katherine M. Hedeen has translated some of the most respected voices from Latin America. She is a recipient of two NEA Translation grants in the US and a PEN Translates award in the UK and is poetry in translation editor at the Kenyon Review. She resides in Ohio, where she is Professor of Spanish at Kenyon College.

Subscribe to Kenning Editions to receive this and every book in our 2019-2020 season, among others: Audre Lorde’s Dream of EuropeGrenade in Mouth: Some Poems of Miyó Vestrini, Kevin Killian’s Stage Fright: Selected Plays from San Francisco Poets Theater, There Three by Devin King, and The Chilean Flag by Elvira Hernández, translated by Alec Schumacher, and with an introduction by Cecilia Vicuña.

Brand new from CUNY’s Center for the Humanities, Conor Tomás Reed gathers reflections on Audre Lorde’s vital legacy in the time of a health pandemic and social uprisings. “Audre Lorde Now” features essays from Reed alongside Tito Mitjans Alayón, Diarenis Calderón Tartabull, and AnouchK Ibacka Valiente–three Afro-Cuban queer and trans cultural workers based in Cuba, Mexico, and Germany–as well as English/Spanish translations of these works by Julián González Beltrez.
Lorde’s DREAM OF EUROPE: SELECTED SEMINARS AND INTERVIEWS: 1984-1992 was published this spring by Kenning Editions, edited by Mayra A. Rodríguez Castro.
 

Kenning Editions authors and translators are helping readers everywhere tune into local initiatives by recommending social justice organizations who could use our support. This summer, when you purchase their book(s) through Kenningeditions.com, the press will donate %25 of the sale price to their chosen organization.

Joshua Clover recommends Bay Area Anti- Repression Committee Bail Fund. Clover co-translated Jean-Marie Gleize’s Tarnac, a preparatory act.

Laura Elrick recommends Equality for Flatbush. Elrick is the author of Propagation.

Craig Dworkin recommends Comunidades Unidas. Dworkin is the author of The Pine-Woods Notebook.

Alec Schumacher recommends Mujeres in Action. Schumacher is the translator of Elvira Hernández’s The Chilean Flag.

Mayra Rodríguez Castro recommends Funcepaz. Castro is the editor of Audre Lorde’s Dream of Europe: Selected Seminars and Interviews 1984-1992.

Olivia Lott recommends ArchCity Defeners. Lott is the co-translator of Soleida Ríos’s The Dirty Text.

Devin King recommends Santa Fe Indian Center. King is the author of The Grand Complication and There Three.

Jesse Seldess recommends CAMBA. Seldess is the author of Several Rotations, Left Having, and Who Opens.

Legna Rodríguez Iglesias’ título, translated by Katherine Hedeen, is coming this summer. Get it, along with the entire 2019-2020 season of titles (Vestrini, Killian, King, Seldess, Lorde, and Hernández), by subscription. Through the month of June, we donate all subscription dollars to The Chicago Freedom School. They get the money, but you get the books.

On June 6, Kenning Editions broadcast a remote reading featuring Ana Arzoumanian with Gabriel Amor, Craig Dworkin, Alec Schumacher reading Elvira Hernández, Brian Kim Stefans reading Arthur Rimbaud, and Steven Zultanski. You can watch it here, archived for posterity.

Also on our Vimeo page are videos of readings from Audre Lorde: Dream of Europe and remnants of the Poets Theater Festival from a few years back.

Meanwhile, if you are able to contribute to the present uprising inspired by the murders of George Floyd by the Minneapolis Police Department, Breonna Taylor by the Louisville Police Department, and Tony McDade by the Tallahassee Police Department, know that all proceeds from Kenning Editions subscriptions through the month of June will be donated to The Chicago Freedom School. You get the books, and they get the money.

If you are able to contribute to the present uprising inspired by the murders of George Floyd by the Minneapolis Police Department, Breonna Taylor by the Louisville Police Department, and Tony McDade by the Tallahassee Police Department, here is a list of community bail funds for each state. Meanwhile, all proceeds from Kenning Editions subscriptions through the month of June will be donated to The Chicago Freedom School. You get the books, and they get the money.

Kenning began as a “newsletter” in the fanzine tradition inspired by punk and the mimeograph revolution, and its premise was to imagine experimental writing as a form of civic discourse. A test was put to the endearing analogies between aesthetic qualities and political commitments, especially where something or someone presents their expression as a form of resistance to the status quo, even iconoclastic. We still sit for this test, twenty-two years later. Noteworthy cultural and commercial institutions—like the Pilsen Community Books store here in Chicago or Printed Matter in New York, also Club Wonder, who hosted the first online reading I ever attended—have partially paused their operations to facilitate reflection and protest. Admirable acts of learning, civil disobedience, and dialogue have been going on and shall remain ongoing. Kenning Editions applauds this and wishes to participate.

 

Join Chicago-based independent publisher Kenning Editions authors and translators for an online reading featuring Ana Arzoumanian with Gabriel Amor, Craig Dworkin,  Alec Schumacher reading Elvira Hernández, Brian Kim Stefans reading Arthur Rimbaud, and Steven Zultanski / June 6 4:00 PM EST

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/kenning-editions-reading-part-two-tickets-107345421044

Ana Arzoumanian was born in Buenos Aires in 1962. She is a lawyer, translator, poet and essayist. Her books of poetry include Labios, Debajo de la piedra, La Jesenská, and Juana I. She has also published several books of fiction, including La mujer de ellos, Mar Negro, and La granada. She has made a documentary film about Armenian genocide and Argentinian dictatorship directed by Ignacio Dimattia in 2010, A- Diálogo sin fronteras. She has made also a documentary film about diaspora in Argentina “Acá y acullá” directed by Hernán Khourian.

Born in Galicia, Spain, Gabriel Amor has lived in New York since the age of five.  He has published translations of poetry and prose by numerous Latin American writers, and received a 2016 PEN/Heim Translation Fund grant for his work on Juana I.

Craig Dworkin is the author of The Pine-Woods Notebook, Alkali, 12 Erroneous Displacements and a Fact, DEF, and numerous other books of poetry. In addition to working as a literary critic and art historian, Dworkin teaches at the University of Utah and serves as Founding Senior Editor to the Eclipse Archive.

Alec Schumacher received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is currently Assistant Professor of Spanish at Gonzaga University. His research focus is Chilean poetry of the neo-avant-garde, in particular, Juan Luis Martínez and Elvira Hernández. He is translator of Hernández’s The Chilean Flag.

Brian Kim Stefans is the translator of Festivals of Patience: The Verse Poems of Arthur Rimbaud, forthcoming from Kenning Editions. His books include Free Space Comix, Fashionable Noise: On Digital Poetics and Kluge: A Meditation. Also a digital artist, his work can be found at arras.net. Word Toys: Poetry and Technics appeared from University of Alabama Press in 2017.

Steven Zultanski is the author of several books, most recently On the Literary Means of Representing the Powerful as Powerless and Honestly. An excerpt of Honestly was first published as PART 3 OR 4 OF “UNFINISHED POEM IN FIVE PARTS” by Kenning Editions’ Ordinance series in 2016. A new pamphlet, Thirty-Odd Functions of Voice in the Poetry of Alice Notley, is just out from Ugly Duckling Presse. He lives in Copenhagen.

Saturday, May 23rd, 7:00 PM EST

Join Chicago-based independent publisher Kenning Editions to launch new and recent books and celebrate back titles with readings by Mayra Rodriguez Castro, Faride Mereb, Devin King, Jesse Seldess, Laura Elrick and Daniel Borzutzky.

Kenning Editions Reading

Daniel Borzutzky is the author and translator of numerous books, including Memories of my OverdevelopmentLake Michigan, and The Performance of Becoming Human, recipient of the 2016 National Book Award for Poetry. He teaches in the English Department and Latin American and Latino Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Born in Bogotá, Colombia, poet and translator Mayra A. Rodríguez Castro is a former Postdoctoral Fellow at the John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin. Rodríguez is the recipient of the Anne Waldman Fellowship at Naropa University (2019). She edited Audre Lorde: Dream of Europe—Selected Seminars and Interviews 1984-1992.

Laura Elrick’s books include Propagation, Fantasies in Permeable Structures, and Skincerity. A new book, What This Breathing is due out later this summer from The Elephants. She teaches writing at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

Devin King is the poetry editor of the Green Lantern Press and the author of There Three and The Grand Complication.

Faride Mereb is a Venezuelan editor and book designer based in New York City and specializing in typography. She is the founder and director of the publishing house Ediciones Letra Muerta and a visiting scholar at Columbia University. In 2018 she was one of the winners of AIGA’s 50 book 50 book covers in both categories. She is editor of Grenade in Mouth: Some Poems of Miyó Vestrini, translated by Anne Boyer and Cassandra Gillig.

Jesse Seldess is the author of three poetry collections: Several Rotations, Left Having, and Who Opens. From 2001 to 2012, he edited and published the international journal of writing, music, and performance Antennae, and from 2003 to 2007, he co-curated the Chicago reading and performance series Discrete Series with Kerri Sonnenberg.

 

DREAM OF EUROPE: SELECTED SEMINARS AND INTERVIEWS: 1984-1992 elucidates Audre Lorde’s methodology as a poet, mentor, and activist during the last decade of her life. This volume compiles a series of seminars, interviews, and conversations held by the author and collaborators across Berlin, Western Europe, and The Caribbean between 1984-1992. These selected writings lay bare struggles, bonds, and hopes shared among Black women in a transnational political context, as well as offering sometimes surprising reflections on the US American counter culture with which Lorde is associated. Many of the poems that were important to Lorde’s development are excerpted in full within these pages, serving as a sort of critical anthology. Edited by Mayra A. Rodríguez Castro. Preface by Dagmar Schultz.

Read more and buy it here from Kenning Editions or here from Small Press Distribution.

Or you may enjoy this series of readings to launch and celebrate the book, featuring Rodriguez Castro, Imani Elizabeth Jackson, Monilola Olayemi Ilupeju, Hanna Girma, Diamond Stingily, Frankie Decaiza Hutchinson, Dorothée Munyaneza, Yulan Grant, and Makayla Bailey.

Please consider subscribing to Kenning Editions for a steeply discounted batch of books, including but not limited to Dream of EuropeGrenade in Mouth: Some Poems of Miyó Vestrini, Kevin Killian’s Stage Fright: Selected Plays from San Francisco Poets TheaterThere Three by Devin King, Several Rotations by Jesse Seldess, and The Chilean Flag by Elvira Hernández, translated by Alec Schumacher, and with an introduction by Cecilia Vicuña.

 

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