Barzakh: Call for Submissions

notley

Collage by Alice Notley. From Barzakh Issue 1 (Spring 2009)

I’m the faculty adviser for the online magazine Barzakh, which recently announced a new call for submissions for their upcoming issue.

Barzakh Magazine is open for submissions from Nov. 15, 2016 through 11:59 p.m. EST on Feb. 15, 2017.

We define ourselves as an “isthmus,” a space of crossings and connectivity, between histories, articulations, and media—making of these frontiers a site of inquiry and revitalization. We want your fiction, poetry, criticism, personal essay, translation*, drawings, photographs—you name it—that pushes against complacent taxonomies and finds itself forging new paths.

Guidelines: All submissions must be submitted to barzakhmagazine@gmail.com. Each genre must be submitted individually. Submit no more than 5 poems, up to 5,000 words of prose, or 5 images. Each submission must be one attached file. We accept submissions in .doc, .docx, .rtf, .pdf, .jpeg, and .mp3 formats. For video submissions, please send a link to an uploaded file, rather than an attachment. The subject line of your email should read “SUBMISSION: [GENRE]: [AUTHOR LAST NAME]” (For example, “SUBMISSION: POETRY: DICKINSON”)

As an interdisciplinary journal with an internationalist stance, Barzakh is looking for critical and creative works that pry wide the liminal spaces between aesthetic modes and fields, between tongues, and between histories. We seek especially works that actively engage with global and local crises and the acts of resistance/pushback that have galvanized in response to them, including, but not limited to:

* Fallout from the 2016 U.S. presidential election

* Violence and conflicts in Syria, Nigeria, Iraq, and across the world

* The water protection movement at Standing Rock

* Race, police brutality, and protest in the era of Black Lives Matter

* Social media as protest and propaganda

* Pledges of Allegiance

* Border walls

* Speaking out against sexual harassment and assault

* Safe spaces

* Politics of identity

Our past issues have featured the works of Nathaniel Mackey, Bernadette Mayer, Vernon Frazer, Edwin Torres, Jena Osman, and Lydia Davis.

The issue will launch in late March of 2017, in correspondence with the 15th Annual UAlbany EGSO Conference: The Badass, featuring acclaimed poet, essayist, and critic Rigoberto González.

*Translations should be accompanied by source text in original language, and written confirmation that you have English translation rights to the piece.

Contributors’ Rights: By submitting work, contributors permit Barzakh Magazine to publish it on our website, and Barzakh retains first serial rights in our digital issue. Copyright reverts to original author immediately upon publication. Barzakh Magazine retains the right to remove your work from our publication without prior notice.

Happy 60th Birthday, Lance Olsen!: 60 Reasons to Celebrate Lance Olsen

lance

I’ve had the deep pleasure of knowing Lance Olsen (for at least seven years now), reviewing his work, interviewing him, teaching one of his books, working as his publicist on three books ([[ there. ]], How to Unfeel the Dead, and Theories of Forgetting), all the while impressed by his profound courage, creativity, intelligence, rigor, humor, generosity, and so much more. In fact, here are at least sixty reasons to celebrate Lance Olsen (This is a circular text, of sorts, in honor of Lance’s 720 months: 360 months times two, with best wishes for at least another full circle of 360 months.):

Continue reading

Happy 92nd Birthday, William H. Gass!

william-gass-s-library

On the occasion of William H. Gass’s birthday, I’ve cherry-picked sentences from all of his books: a publishing career spanning five decades. This was no easy task, since his fictions and essays and interviews are troves of meticulously rendered, seemingly sculpted, sentences, each one a delight to the eye, music to the ear. I’ve chosen ninety-two in honor of his birthday, but I could easily have chosen a hundred more. Thanks, Magister Gass!

Continue reading

Vanessa Place’s “It’s Kind of Fucked Up” (2015)

It's kind of fucked up, it's fucked up (Place)
What do we make of Vanessa Place’s curious presence in the special dossier “On Race and Innovation” that Dawn Lundy Martin edited for the November 2015 issue of boundary 2? To put it mildly, Place is not the first person one would expect in such a grouping. Is this an example of “conceptual editing”? Martin, not surprisingly, explicitly frames the dossier in terms of the recent controversies that have inflamed the poetry world since last spring:

Kenneth Goldsmith was excoriated for reading Michael Brown’s autopsy report in a conceptual poetry performance at Brown University, and a petition successfully got Vanessa Place (included in this issue) removed from an AWP subcommittee because of her Twitter appropriation of the black voices from Margaret Mitchell’s Gone with the Wind. Still, in all the mayhem, in all the personal attacks on social media, there has not been much actual conversation about what poetry has to say, and can say, about race in the contemporary moment.

A diptych of two hand-drawn phrases, “IT’S KIND OF FUCKED UP” and “IT’S FUCKED UP” (see above), Place’s piece seems to demonstrate in a colloquial register what Freud calls the “narcissism of minor differences.” Continue reading