10 October 2013

Poetry Research Network

The Poetry Research Network, set up at the end of 2011, focusses on modern and contemporary poetry from throughout the cultures of the world. Its aim is to reach a fuller understanding of the forms of poetic practice.

In developing critical tools appropriate to the genre, the network represents a site where practice meets theoretical thinking. Drawing on academic expertise, we are reaching out to national and international poets through a series of workshops. Poets of differing outlooks have been invited to present their work and to participate in our poetry translation workshops.

We have brought international poetry scholars to Wales, in order that researchers and students come into contact with the latest poetry and the latest approaches to long-standing poetry.

The Poetry Research Network particularly welcomes researchers from abroad and those working in languages other than English, as well as specialists in the translation of poetry and in the interactions between poetry and music, poetry and visual art, and poetry and theatre.

Poetry has always found itself in touch with its outside – with other languages, with other semiotic systems, including the visual arts, performing arts and music, as well as politics and history. These are particular areas for the development of our research and our research-led events.

Theme for 2011-12: Hamlet and Poetry. The network’s inaugural event was the conference "Hamlet and Poetry" held at Atrium in Cardiff. Selected papers from the event were published as a special themed issue of the open-access journal New Readings.
Theme for 2012-13: Poetry under Pressure. We invited researchers and poets to Cardiff to participate in readings, talks and workshops which took place at public venues across the city in May 2012. The theme of poetry under pressure was variously interpreted – as pressure from a government cultural policy or pressure from a dominant discourse, for example – and provided the framework for a series of encounters between German poets, Welsh poets, translators, researchers and the public.
Themes for 2013-14: Dylan Thomas and Nicanor Parra. 2014 is the centenary of both British poet Dylan Thomas's birth and Chilean poet Nicanor Parra's. As such it offers an opportunity to re-assess the significance of their poetry from new angles. Following an AHRC-sponsored presentation to BBC Wales on the German Dylan Thomas, we are making a radio programme about the impact of Thomas in Germany. An Anti-Conference Pro Parra is taking place in Cardiff in November 2014.