The Hybrid Text [or: Trans-genre Writing] in 21st c. American Poetry, Proposed roundtable, ALA in San Francisco, May 27-30 2010

full name / name of organization: 
Megan Simpson, Penn State Altoona / Merle Bachman, Spalding University
contact email: 

Seeking participants for a proposed roundtable to explore the significance of contemporary poetic texts that question the conventions/boundaries of genre. Poems that incorporate journals, lyric essay fragments, and prose are, of course, not new--but what are the current trajectories of development in this kind of poetic writing? While the century-old distinction between avant-garde and traditional poetries has been challenged in the recent anthology American Hybrid, generating much lively discussion both online and at national conferences, this roundtable means "hybrid" to refer more specifically to poetry that disrupts or writes through conventions of genre—poetry in which the practice of hybridity becomes a locus of thinking—a thinking that often strays into the elegaic. We speculate that at this moment in American poetics there is a desire to address issues of the personal and political in ways that summon a trans-genre hybridity. What particular themes or preoccupations seem to evoke trans-genre poetry? What can we learn from the innovations wrought by poets like Claudia Rankine, Kimko Hahn, Fanny Howe, Kazim Ali, Bin Ramke, and others? How might ethnicity or other "minority" status come into play? Is it possible that "pure" genres fail as fields in which to work out our relation to the present American moment?"
Please send a 200-400 word statement of your proposed contribution to this roundtable, along with a brief CV, via email to AND (attachments fine) by January 20, 2010.