Democracy in Poetry Blogs, high art, Intro To Graduate Studies, Poetry Blogs

Slam Poetry, (cont.), & (?)Democracy(?)+blogs, &Aesthetics

I shared with my class today my idea about the similarities between slam poetry and poetry blogging. My fellow classmates liked the idea. One of them even suggested comparing it to the bathroom graffiti poetry. I don’t think I’ll do that in my paper, but maybe someone else would like to do that. Another one asked me about the aesthetics of poetry blogs–how are they ranked. I realized that we don’t really rank poetry blogs in terms of aesthetics or quality that way. It made me realize that we don’t really rank poetry blogs off of their content. We rank them more by their popularity. And that confused me. Why don’t we rank them in terms of aesthetics? I’m hoping that the more aesthetically pleasing blogs are the ones that are viewed the most so that the most popular ones are really the most aesthetic ones, but I’m really not sure about that. It did cause me to stumble and think hard in class. How trustworthy are popularity votes for poetry blogs? What are people wanting in a poetry blog?

Another classmate, a Briton, asked me if the “democracy” I was mentioning in my paper was the “American Democracy” or was it a different form (maybe he said “Populist Democracy???” I’m really not sure–I couldn’t even tell in class.) Regardless of the other option, I thought it was an interesting question, and it made me realize that most the scholars I’ve been reading have all assumed it was the American form of democracy to which they were referring. It  is an interesting thought, and one that would definitely bear some looking into, to see if other cultures explicitly realize a “democratic” quality to blogging, and if that democracy is American in nature. Is America the implicit model for blogging?  He was wondering how readers could comment on blogs. Were their comments moderated or were they publicly posted? Interesting question and one that I can’t answer. I know that administrators can choose if they will moderate the comments they receive, but it’s not possible for the reader to know if the comments are moderated or not. This would, however, really effect the “realness” and “transparency” of the blogs. It would also change what kind of “democratic poetry blog” the site really was.   I don’t think this is the direction that my paper is going, but it was still an interesting comment from my British classmate. It’s good to have a diverse class because everyone is looking at the same topic through different experiences, nationalities, and ideologies.

Mmmkay. That’s it for now! What do y’all think? IMG_2333.jpg

Intro To Graduate Studies, Poetry Blogs

Poetry Blogging and Slam Poetry

After reading an academic article from American Studies, African American Literary,  “Contemporary “Black?” Performance Poetry,” I believe that I could make a connection between poetry blogs and slam poetry for one of the papers I’m currently writing. I don’t know why I didn’t think of this earlier, but as Birgit M. Bauridl continued writing her article, I found the connection between poetry blogs and slams becoming increasingly apparent.

For one, both blogs and slams aren’t considered a “highart”form. Poetry slams occur in bars and cafes usually and blogs… well obviously anyone can write those. 🙂

Another connection I found is the importance for both poets to make a good impression and build a relationship with their audience. Those performing at poetry slams receive a score from the audience present and poetry bloggers can receive feedback in the form of comments from their readers.

And this brings me to another similarity, both poetry slams and poetry blogs are a type of public performance of poetry. Right? Obviously you can see how poetry slams perform poetry, but I would argue that poetry blogging also performs poetry. Authors post their poems; they design their site; they choose the colors, background, fonts, hyperlinks….this is all part of performance.


Derrida, Intro To Graduate Studies, Literary Theory

Derrida has got me confused….

In class yesterday we discussed Derrida’s “The Animal that Therefore I Am (More to Follow) .” I’m not super familiar with Derrida’s work, but I do have a general idea of his work dealing with deconstruction and post-structuralism. Personally, I do not care for the extremely postmodern and post-structuralism works, I prefer more [structure/construction] in my literature. However, I know that Derrida’s work is obviously not something to completely wipe off my slate or ignore.

I haven’t. I’ve been pondering and attempting to understand his “The Animal that Therefore I am (More to Follow),” and I feel like I’m struggling to see how the essay as a whole all works together. I feel like I can understands bits of it, but then I lose the argument as I work through the rest of the essay. I’m definitely planning on studying it more over this weekend, but if anyone has comments/insights they would like to impart on this confused student, I’d be extremely grateful.

What I do know is that Derrida was calling for animal rights to some extent. And bringing up the question of what we owe animals. But how this connects with literary theory is a mystery to me. I hope that I can wrestle some meaning out of it this weekend. That’s my hope.

But please, help this girl out if you can. 🙂


On a happier note, my professor likes the direction one of my papers is headed…so that was basically the highlight of my day. 😀 IMG_3426


Ideas for Portfolio

I’ve been thinking a lot about what exactly I want to do for my portfolio. I’m nearing the end of the semester and I still need to create an advisory committee/board. I emailed my advisor and asked him if I could meet with him this week for next semester’s classes. Unfortunately, there aren’t very many literature classes offered, so it will be interesting to try to mold the class to my portfolio idea (which I currently have not solidified.)

Probably I need to do that soon.

I know I have an idea… I think. If I just keep digging I eventually will strike gold. Portfolio gold.

I know I want to do something with narrative technique and how authors construct reality in a believable way.

I like 18th and 19th century British and American literature.

How can I combine these? Do I need a more specific genre? I like memoirs, but I also find first person fiction narratives fascinating. How does the author build trust with his readers?

touch the ceiling
Reach for the [sky]