full name / name of organization:
David Mc Carthy - University of East Anglia
Venue: University of East Anglia (UEA) School of American Studies
Date: 7th December 2013
Plenary Lecture/Reading: Michael Palmer
Film Screening: Robert Mc Tavish’s The Line Has Shattered (Vancouver’s Landmark 1963 Poetry Conference)
This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of one of the most seminal events in modern American poetry, the
Vancouver Poetry Conference 1963. Following the publication of Donald Allen’s prescient The New American
Poetry in 1960, Warren Tallman and Robert Creeley gathered together a number of the New American poets
(including Charles Olson, Robert Duncan, and Allen Ginsberg) in Vancouver for three weeks of poetry readings,
public lectures, workshops and roundtable discussions on contemporary experimental poetics. This occasion
helped to consolidate some of the primary theoretical arguments informing American experimental poetry of the
period and facilitated an unprecedented level of cross-fertilisation and dialogic exchange between current and
successive generations of experimental poets.
To coincide with UEA’s own fiftieth anniversary, the School of American Studies will be hosting a one
day conference to reassess the continuing legacies of the Vancouver Poetry Conference and its participants. We
welcome proposals on topics related, but not limited, to:
The poetry/poetics of the contributors to the conference; Robert Creeley, Charles Olson, Robert
Duncan, Allen Ginsberg, Denise Levertov, Philip Whalen, Margaret Avison, etc.
A cross-border (Am-Can) avant-garde: for example, the influence of the conference in establishing
a relationship between experimental poets associated with Robin Blaser in British Columbia and
those associated with Robert Duncan in San Francisco.
The transgression of borders in experimental American poetry (formal, stylistic, thematic, etc
and/or political, philosophical, sexual, religious, etc)
The importance of the border (spatial, conceptual, literal, ethical, textual, etc) in experimental
Instances of direct inter-generational influence and/or dialogue between the contributors and
successive experimental poets/poetry collectives
Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words to firstname.lastname@example.org by 31st August 2013.
Beyond the Border
The Vancouver Poetry Conference