Charles Bernstein

Alexander Skidan on Close Listening

photo by Charles Bernstein / PennSound

Alexander Skidan was born in Leningrad in 1965. He is a poet, critic, essayist and translator. In 2008 his book Red Shifting was published in USA by Ugly Duckling Presse, tr. Genya Turovskaya. He is the co-editor of the New Literary Observer magazine and lives in Saint Petersburg.

Program One: Skidan reads from Red Shifting (Brooklyn: Ugly Ducking Press, 2008) in Russian as well as reading  the English translations by Genya Turovskaya. MP3

Program Two: Skidan discusses his Ugly Duckling Press book, Red Shifting, the changes in the literary climate in Russia after 1989, the contemporary situation for poetry in Russia, and the mysticism of Arkadii Dragomoschenko.  MP3

Bernstein in Warsaw: Video of lecture at American Studies Center, University of Warsaw

American Studies Center, University of Warsaw: “The Pitch of Poetry: Moral Perfectionism, Occupy Wall Street, and the Poetics of Holocaust Representation” 
(27 November 2014)
from Pitch of Poetry (University of Chicago Press, 2016)

PennSound archival link

Vulgar Beauty: Bill Berkson on Close Listening

Berkson & Bernstein, at Penn, by Thomas Devaney

Bill Berkson in conversation with Charles Bernstein on Close Listening (36:56): MP3
Berkson in conversation with Bernstein undergraduate seminar (34:49): MP3

February 10, 2014, University of Pennsylvania; recorded and edited by Bernstein.  Bill Berkson discusses unprincipled poetry, vulgar beauty,  the poetics of surface, the emergence of the New American Poetry, the trap of being too serious, and the possibilities of the unexpected.

Albena Lutzkanova-Vassileva's 'The Testimonies of Russian and American Postmodern Poetry' +: new Lev Rubinstein volume from UDP

The Testimonies of Russian and American Postmodern Poetry: Reference, Trauma, and History (Bloomsbury, 2014) is divided in half. The first part looks at 1970s/1980s Russian (Moscow) conceptual poetry and poetics, focussing on Dmitry Prigov and Lev Rubinstein (Rubinshtein) but also on the "meta-realists" Elena Schvarts and Alexi Parschikov (Arkadii Dragomoschenko is a key poet for this context, though not a main subject here). Artists Grisha Bruskin and Ilya Kabakov are also main subjects. The second part of the book makes an  between both Moscow conceptualism and St. Petersburg metarealist poetry and the 1970s/1980s poetry/poetics associated with L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E. Lutzkanova-Vassileva offers detailed readings of Bob Perelman, Bruce Andrews Steve McCaffery, David Melnick, Ron Silliman, as well as my work.  Lutzkanova-Vassileva also traces the connection to the Russian futurists (Shklovsky, Khelbinikov, Kruchenykh).