Projective Relationships: Collaboration and Practice in Post-1945 American Poetry

deadline for submissions: 
September 1, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
The Charles Olson Society
contact email: 

The Charles Olson Society will sponsor a session at the annual Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture since 1900, to be held at the University of Louisville, February, 21-23, 2019. We are interested in abstracts concerning any collaborative or influential relationships between mid-Century American poets, but in particular poets working within or against the mechanics of “Projective Verse.” While Charles Olson’s influential essay of 1950 is sometimes taken as a series of dogmatic propositions about poetics, the correspondences between poets like Olson, Robert Duncan, Robert Creeley, Denise Levertov, Muriel Rukeyser, and LeRoi Jones, among many others, suggest that the form and content of projective verse can also be treated as a conversation and a matter of ideas in dynamic synthesis. Moreover, social and collaborative poetic events occurred throughout the 1960s, such as the 1963 Vancouver Poetry Conference and the 1965 Berkeley Poetry Conference. The conversations and relationships established at these events also shaped the modes and theories surrounding projective and other forms of experimental verse. How did the social relationships established either in correspondence, at these events, or simply through the mechanics of reading and influence disseminate, extend, or challenge the original mechanics of “Projective Verse”? More generally, how do social relationships between poets in the post-1945 era create poetry? We are interested in abstracts organized around either or both questions.

Those interested should send a 250 word abstract to Joshua Hoeynck ( no later than September 1st. Please include your academic affiliation (if any) and a brief biographical note with your abstract.