Gregory Pardlo on the Craft of Writing

Heimbold Visual Arts Center Donnelley Film Theatre

Open to the public

/ Wednesday


"This Is Not A Pipe": An Open-Genre Approach to the Craft of Voice
with Gregory Pardlo

One of the tragic consequences of being confined to a single body is that we will never know what other people experience when they meet us for the first time. We can't know how someone will register the slight change in the atmosphere that our presence causes when we enter a room. And yet, in many types of first-person writing, during the revision process at least, these are the kinds of perspectives we try to approximate as we take on a reader's objectivity. How do we cultivate a kind of out-of-body-relationship to the self that helps us write in ways that don't merely serve the ego? What can we gain by understanding that the first-person pronoun is a fabrication separate and apart from the person it represents?

Gregory Pardlo's collection Digest (Four Way Books) won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. His other honors include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts; his first collection Totem was selected by Brenda Hillman for the APR/Honickman Prize in 2007. He is Poetry Editor of Virginia Quarterly Review and currently teaches in the graduate writing program at Rutgers-Camden University. Air Traffic, a memoir in essays, was released by Knopf in 2018.