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Thursday, March 26 • 2:30pm - 3:45pm
Divination As Praxis

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A panel on the use of divinatory practices as related to writing and writing experiments. We will investigate traditional and non-traditional “divine” modes of communication and their impact on personal and political writing practices. Emerson Whitney will moderate a panel discussion between Schutzman, Kapil, and Saterstrom.  Mady Schutzman will discuss an array of practices that acknowledge the contract between the known and the unknown world, practices situated in radical doubt and that keep ambivalence (and creativity) healthy.  Bhanu Kapil’s practice is deeply rooted in personalized ritual and unbridled experimentation, for example: “bibliomancy — the art of divination in libraries — [has] always been an instinctive part of my life…” she said in a recent interview with Tinge Magazine. “I let my hand drift, palm down — to sense through the palm, as in palmistry — the way I learned it. An under-art. The sense that it is never the line that holds the news of a life, but what flows beneath and through it.” Saterstrom too engages what she calls “divinatory poetics,” or exercises into writing through tarot, channeling techniques, and hermeneutics. Finally, Whitney is a writer currently working on a project involving divining for strangers, embodying the fortune teller stereotype as a means to explore his ethnic gypsy (Romani) heritage, while also engaging the history of chance operations in art and writing, coincidence, correlation, and faith. 

Moderators
avatar for Emerson Whitney

Emerson Whitney

Professor, Los Angeles City College
Emerson Whitney is a poet, writer, and journalist based in Los Angeles. He is the author of Ghost Box (Timeless Infinite Light, 2014) and his work has appeared in numerous publications including Jupiter 88, Troubling the Line: Anthology of Trans and Genderqueer Poetry, Work Magazine, Bombay Gin, the Huffington Post, and the New York Observer. Emerson is a kari edwards fellow (2013) and a Charlotte Bordeaux Awardee (2012). He is a professor of... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Bhanu Kapil

Bhanu Kapil

Bhanu Kapil lives in Colorado where she teaches writing at Naropa University’s Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, as well as Goddard College’s low-residency MFA. She is the author of a number of full-length works of poetry/prose, including The Vertical Interrogation of Strangers (Kelsey Street Press, 2001), Incubation: a space for monsters (Leon Works, 2006), humanimal [a project for... Read More →
avatar for Selah Saterstrom

Selah Saterstrom

Selah Saterstrom is the author of The Meat and Spirit Plan and The Pink Institution (Coffee House Press),a debut novel praised across the country for “letting gusts of fresh, tart air blow into the old halls of Southern Gothic” (The Believer). Named a best book of the year by Venus magazine, the New Orleans Gambit, and The Believer, this breakout book was also a favorite among... Read More →
avatar for Mady Schutzman

Mady Schutzman

Mady Schutzman (Ph.D. Performance Studies, NYU) is a writer, scholar, theatre artist, and filmmaker.  She has published essays and performance texts in several journals including The Drama Review, Women and Performance, Theatre Topics, The Journal of Medical Humanities, American Communication Journal, Black Clock and Cargo, as well as in several critical anthologies. Her book The Real Thing: Performance, Hysteria... Read More →


Thursday March 26, 2015 2:30pm - 3:45pm
Coffee House Theater

Attendees (36)