In “Epic & Performance,” Anne Waldman writes, “we all live the epic life,” meaning that we all live amidst war, prophecy, corruption, triumph, and belief. Given our contemporary (political) moment, the form of the epic is rife with possibility—a “hero’s” journey explicitly challenges a reader to meet violence head on, to wade into uncertainty, and take charge of the agency language offers. The stakes are particularly high when the poet is not the usual patriarch in training. This workshop will look at various approaches to the contemporary epic as a form of action and activism, and the teaching and writing of the feminist epic as revolution in and of itself. Why turn to epic in 2020? What kind of news can this kind of poetics make?
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