Today at 7pm, City Lore’s Director of Poetry Programs Catherine Fletcher moderates a panel dedicated to the Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here project. Poet and scholar Ammiel Alcalay, Iraqi-American poet Alise Alousi, poet and project founder Beau Beausoleil, and ArabLit’s M. Lynx Qualey “gather to reflect on this landmark project and the important role of poetics in Middle Eastern culture”:
Where: Poets House, 10 River Terrace (at Murray Street), New York, NY 10282
Admission: $10, $7 for students and seniors, free to Poets House, City Lore and Center for the Book Arts members
No heckling, please.
The series on Iraqi poetry continues; this Thursday, Dr. Issa Boullatta writes about Badr Shakir al-Sayyab. From the interview:
“The concept of iltizam (commitment) in literature was becoming prevalent among younger Arab writers in the 1950s and 1960s, mainly as defined by Jean-Paul Sartre’s engagement, and al-Sayyab was one of the foremost committed Arab poets without letting his verse fall into triteness or become a stereotypical or cheap political discourse. He always aimed at novel images and inventive forms, and he dealt with urgent issues and became very popular. He made me think that that was what poetry should be, and not merely beautiful writing expressing one’s personal emotions collected in moments of tranquility, with no serious purpose.”