In this seminar, Urayoán Noel will discuss his critical work on the nexus of creative expression and political activism, from the 1960s to the present. He is interested in the subversive power of media, performance, and especially of English-Spanish-Spanglish language play, which cuts across different Latina/o/x constituencies. One dimension of his research involves the use of social media among activist DREAMers and in the Haitian-Dominican context, expressed in the #Latinx hashtag and Dominican Twitter. Another thread considers “eccentric archives of the Latina/o Sixties” by comparing two poetic movements, the Royal Chicano Air Force and El Puerto Rican Embassy. Although centered in California and New York respectively, both groups of poet-performers imagined sites of organization outside the nation-state: “Califas” and “Nuyorico.” Finally, Professor Noel considers the changing work of the space of the Nuyorican Poets Cafe from the 1970s to the present, from anti-gentrification to anti-globalization movements.
Pastries, coffee, and tea will be served.
Urayoán Noel is a self-described “stateless poet” whose critical and creative work foregrounds the messy condition of Puerto Rican belonging and non-belonging in and to the U.S. nation-state. His poetic performances, texts, and “video poems” flagrantly comingle English with Spanish, mixing learned literary allusions with found words generated from cell phones or political demonstrations.
Born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Professor Noel lives in the Bronx and is an associate professor of English and Spanish at New York University. He is the author of Buzzing Hemisphere/Rumor Hemisférico (Arizona, 2015), a Library Journal Top Fall Indie Poetry selection; Hi-Density Politics (BlazeVox, 2010), a National Book Critics Circle Small Press Highlights selection; Kool Logic/La Lógica Kool (Bilingual Review, 2005), an El Nuevo Día Book of the Year; the performance text EnUncIAdOr (Educación Emergente, 2014); and several books mostly in Spanish. Other works include the DVD Kool Logic Sessions (Bilingual Review, 2005), a collaboration with composer Monxo López; the artist’s book/performance/website The Edgemere Letters (2011), a collaboration with artist Martha Clippinger; and the critical study In Visible Movement: Nuyorican Poetry from the Sixties to Slam (Iowa, 2014), winner of the LASA Latina/o Studies Book Award and recipient of an honorable mention in the MLA Prize in Latina/o and Chicana/o Literary and Cultural Studies. A contributing editor to the NACLA Report on the Americas and Obsidian: Literature & Arts in the African Diaspora, he has received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, the Howard Foundation, the Bronx Council on the Arts, and CantoMundo. He is currently completing a bilingual edition of the poems of Pablo de Rokha.