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Keith Waldrop Conversation

Keith Waldrop talks with host Charles Bernstein about growing up in Kansas, the influence of Christianity on his poetry and his work as a translator. Waldrop grew up in Kansas and studied at the universities of Aix-Marseille and Michigan, earning a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature in 1964. Waldrop's first book of poetry, A Windmill Near Calvary (University of Michigan Press, 1968), was nominated for a National Book Award. His more recent titles include Several Gravities (Siglio, 2009), a collection of collages, and two collections of Charles Baudelaire translations, The Flowers of Evil (Wesleyan University Press, 2006) and Paris Spleen: Little Poems in Prose (Wesleyan University Press, 2009). Sun & Moon published his fictional memoir, Light While There Is Light, in 1993. With Rosmarie Waldrop, he is the editor and publisher of Burning Deck Press. A prolific translator of French poetry, he has worked with texts by poets as diverse as Jean Grosjean and Claude Royet-Journoud. He teaches in the Literary Arts department of Brown University (30 minutes).


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Conversations and readings with poets and artists, produced in cooperation with PennSound and hosted by Charles Bernstein, the American poet, theorist, editor, and literary scholar. Bernstein was born in New York City in 1950. He is a foundational member and leading practitioner of Language poetry. Bernstein was educated at the Bronx High School of Science and at Harvard University, where he studied philosophy with Stanley Cavell and wrote his final thesis on Gertrude Stein and Ludwig Wittgenstein.

In the mid-1970s Bernstein became active in the experimental poetry scenes in New York and San Francisco, not only as a poet, but also as an editor, publisher, and theorist. With visual artist and wife Susan Bee, Bernstein published several now well-known poets whose work is associated with Language writing.