For the third installment of “Women, Feminists, and Other Poets: A Series of Readings and Conversations” the Jordan Center will host poets Dina Gatina, Polina Barskova, and Vlazhyna Mort alongside professor and translator Ainsley Morse.
This April, the Jordan Center will host 6 contemporary Russian poets for a series of readings and conversations. With a view to the recent anthology F-Letter: New Russian Feminist Poetry (isolarii, 2020), this series probes the recent history of women writing poetry in Russian. Whether explicitly feminist or otherwise, women have been prominent, if not dominant voices in Russian-language poetry for the past several decades. This series explores the power of language and its role in society, bringing together writing women of various generations and backgrounds to talk about their work, each other, and what it means to be a woman writing in Russian today. The series is organized by Professor Ainsley Morse and NYU PhD Candidate Rebekah Smith.
The poet, prose writer, artist and set designer Dina Gatina hails from the city of Engels. She has published two books of poetry: По кочкам (Across the hummocks) (2005) and Безбашенный костлявый слон [Bezbashennij Kostlyavij Slon]. She has also performed as a singer at various musical venues in Moscow, Saratov, St. Petersburg, Vladimir, Saransk etc.
Polina Barskova is a poet and a scholar, author of twelve collections of poems and two books of prose in Russian. She also authored a monograph Besieged Leningrad: Aesthetic Responses to Urban Disaster (2017) and edited three scholarly volumes. Her collection of creative nonfiction, Living Pictures, received the Andrey Bely Prize in 2015 and was published in German with Suhrkamp Verlag and is forthcoming in English with NYRB. She edited the Leningrad Siege poetry anthology Written in the Dark (UDP) and has four collections of poetry published in English translation: This Lamentable City (Tupelo Press), The Zoo in Winter (Melville House), Relocations (Zephyr Press), Air Raid (forthcoming with Ugly Duckling Presse, 2021). She has taught at Hampshire College, Amherst College, and Smith College. In 2021, she will be teaching Russian literature at the University of California at Berkeley.
Valzhyna Mort‘s third book of poetry, Music for the Dead and Resurrected (FSG), has been named one of the Best Poetry Books of 2020 by The New York Times and NPR. Mort is a recipient of fellowships from the National Endowments for the Arts, the Lannan Foundation, and the Amy Clampitt Foundation. Born in Minsk, Belarus, she writes in English and Belarusian. Mort’s translation of Polina Barskova, Air Raid, is forthcoming from Ugly Duckling Presse in 2021.
Ainsley Morse translates Russian and former Yugoslav literatures and teaches at Dartmouth College. She co-edited two recent collections of contemporary women’s poetry (F-Letter: New Russian Feminist Poetry and Lida Yusupova’s The Scar We Know) and is currently translating the early Soviet-era novels of Konstantin Vaginov and a surrealist children’s book by the Yugoslav poets Aleksandar Vučo and Dušan Matić.
Watch the event recording on YouTube here.