Disobedient Futures Anthology – Open for Submissions

Rita Banerjee and Diana Norma Szokolyai will be editing Disobedient Futures, a new speculative literature and art anthology by the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop, which is now open for submissions until February 14, 2019!

Cambridge Writers’ Workshop welcomes submissions of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, mixed-genre work, plays, and screenplays on the topic of “Disobedient Futures” for our new speculative literature anthology. Writers are encouraged to imagine what the future cultures of America and the world might look like, and submit their work on the following topics:

Disobedient Women: How might women, feminists, female-identifying, and/or non-binary individuals disobey and reconfigure our understandings of power and femininity and masculinity in the future?

Disobedient Tribes: What if Americans found a way to subvert racial categories and challenge tribalism and cultures of fear? How might tribes disobey the rules of the game and create new types of community identities and cultural bridges?

Disobedient Class: Could Americans in the future overcome systems of class oppression and capitalist gluttony? How might individuals in the future subvert class hierarchies?

Disobedient Futures: Tell us what the future cultures of America and the world have in store. How might the emerging generations of today and tomorrow reconfigure today’s value systems, challenge today’s modes of violence, oppression, and power, and create new visions of society? Give us your best speculative writing which explores the possibilities and disruptions of disobedient futures.

Writers are welcome to submit utopian, dystopian, parallel history, futuristic, alternative reality, speculative essay, and even purely speculative fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and theatre. Optimistic and pessimistic tales of the future are welcome in equal measure, but gratuitous violence and discrimination are not. Poetry submissions should be 3-5 pages in length. Prose submissions can be 10-20 pages in length.  Excerpts from longer works with synopses are welcome. Visual art related to these categories of Disobedient Futures is also welcome.  Submit your retelling of the future today!

Submit your work at cww.submittable.com
Deadline: February 14, 2019

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Rita Banerjee’s Hindi / English poem “One Night” (एक रात में) feat. on Soundcloud

Rita Banerjee’s Hindi poem, “एक रात में” (“Ek Rāt Meṃ,” “One Night”) is now available for streaming through Tahoma Literary Review‘s Soundcloud.  You can listen to the original Hindi and English translation of the poem here.  A copy of the Hindi poem follows below:

एक रात में

मैंने एक रात बािरश के हाज़ार नाच सुने
चूड़ी की तरह आकाश टुकड़े टुकड़े हो गया
गली के आइने में पृथ्वी उलटी लगी
पानी के िहलने से सब दुिनया बदलने लगी
और मेरी तस्वीर भी दूसरी हो गई
चारों तरफ़ आकाश के नाच में
असली दुिनया नक़ली लगने लगी
और पानी के एक एक टुकड़े में
चाँद हँस रहा था।

Banerjee’s Hindi / English poem “One Night” (एक रात में) is featured in Issue 13 (December 2018) of the Tahoma Literary Review.  You can order a copy of Issue 13 of The Tahoma Literary in print or on Kindle.

Rita Banerjee’s Hindi / English poem “One Night” (एक रात में) feat. in the Tahoma Literary Review

Rita Banerjee’s Hindi poem, “एक रात में” (“Ek Rāt Meṃ,” “One Night”) is featured in Issue 13 (December 2018) of the Tahoma Literary Review.  You can order a copy of Issue 13 of The Tahoma Literary in print or on Kindle.  On the poem, Banerjee writes:

“When I was a Visiting Scholar at UC Berkeley and working on my dissertation on South Asian literary modernisms, I took a wonderful Hindi Literature and Language course with the unforgettable Usha Jain.  In class, we read satirical and socially and psychologically subversive works by Premchand and Sa’ādat Hasan Manto in their original Hindi and in Hindi translation from Urdu. During class, Usha Jain encouraged us to write poems, essays, and stories, in Hindi, too. This poem, “One Night,” is meant to be a nod towards the dark humor Premchand and Manto espoused, especially during troubled times.”

You can read more about the featured poem here.

Celebrate Asian American Heritage Month with Rita Banerjee’s “Sleep” on Poets.org

In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the Academy of American Poets has featured a series of poems by modern and contemporary Asian American poets and writers.  Rita Banerjee’s poem “Sleep,” which was the Academy of American Poets’s Poem-a-Day on November 30, 2017, is one of the featured audio poems this month on Poets.org.  Check out “Sleep” (from Rita Banerjee’s collection Echo in Four Beats) and all the featured Asian American writers on the Academy of American Poets.org!

Celebrating CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing’s Publication Day!

CREDO-RitaBanerjee-DianaNormaSzokolyai

The Cambridge Writers’ Workshop is celebrating the publication of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing today!

CREDO (C&R Press, May 15, 2018) is edited by writers and CWW co-directors Rita Banerjee and Diana Norma Szokolyai and assistant editors Alexander Carrigan and Megan Jeanine Tilley. CREDO advocates for the empowerment of female, LGBTQ+, and other marginalized literary voices, with essays and manifestos that cover a wide range of subjects, including transgender poetics, world literature and aesthetics, collage and appropriation, and the politics of place. By presenting a triad of creative writing manifestos, essays on the craft of writing, and creative writing exercises, CREDO bridges the theoretical, political, and aesthetic perspectives on contemporary writing with practical and accessible writing advice. Our incredible CREDO contributing authors are some of the most exciting voices in contemporary poetry, fiction and non-fiction and will leave you feeling inspired.

Meet Our Contributing Authors!

Kazim Ali \ Forrest Anderson \ Rita Banerjee \ Lisa Marie Basile \ Jaswinder Bolina \ Stephanie Burt \ Alexander Carrigan \ Sam Cha \ Melinda J. Combs \ Thade Correa \ Jeff Fearnside \ Ariel Francisco \ John Guzlowski \ Rachael Hanel \ Janine Harrison \ Lindsay Illich \ Douglas Charles Jackson \ Caitlin Johnson \ Christine Johnson-Duell \ Jason Kapcala \ Richard Kenney \ Eva Langston \ John Laue \ Stuart Lishan \ Ellaraine Lockie \ Amy MacLennan \ Kevin McLellan \ E. Ce. Miller \ Brenda Moguez \ Peter Mountford \ Nell Irvin Painter \ Robert Pinsky \ Kara Provost \ Camille Rankine \ Jessica Reidy \ Amy Rutten \ Elisabeth Sharp McKetta \ David Shields \ Lillian Ann Slugocki \ Maya Sonenberg \ Kathleen Spivack \ Laura Steadham Smith \ Molly Sutton Kiefer \ Jade Sylvan \ Anca L. Szilágyi \ Diana Norma Szokolyai \ Marilyn L. Taylor \ Megan Jeanine Tilley \ Suzanne Van Dam \ Nicole Walker \ Allyson Whipple \ Shawn Wong \ Caroll Sun Yang \ Matthew Zapruder

On Saturday, May 19, the Cambridge Writers’ Workshop will celebrate the 90th Anniversary of the Grolier Poetry Book Shop at the Grolier Poetry Festival in Harvard Square. CREDO contributing authors Kathleen Spivack, Kevin McLellan and the CWW’s co-director and CREDO editor, Diana Norma Szokolyai will read. Diana Norma Szokolyai will also be teaching a CREDO workshop where copies of CREDO will be available for purchase. Stop by between 1-4 p.m.!

CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing can be purchased through C&R Press, Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Rita Banerjee’s Echo in Four Beats Reviewed on Yellow Rabbits

Greg Bem, curator of Yellow Rabbits, reviews Rita Banerjee’s debut poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018).  In the review, Bem writes:

For every moving shade,
there was a jewel,
a bunt cake,
tea with honey,
rubies, too,
found them dead in a village
near the Ganges,
in some bastard king’s chest

(from “Pygmalion & the Slippers”)

At its core, the Echo in Four Beats is about Ovid’s myth of Echo and Narcissus, which serves as a fitting allegory for poetry in general, but also the landscape previously-described. A dualism within the speakers of these poems is a dualism of acceptance and rejection, of sequences of flight and iterations of home…

 

We were like that—lanterns in the midday sun,
laughter against a white-noise wind, tongues
circling salt-water stories, cliffs cocooned by the afternoon, cameras
catching harbor fish, reptiles, serpents, impossible possibilities–

(from “Atlantis”)

Much of the experience where these transformations are derived, carried by the mythic allegories the poet’s subtle adaptations of ancient lessons, is tangibly encountered in place and culture. While the back cover of Echo in Four Beats contains a quote by Jaswinder Bolina describing the book as “post-national,” I believe the antithesis is far more obvious. This is a book collecting poems that encounters and elevates individual nations, individual cultural histories, and appreciates them through their intertwining. In the ways the otherness in Echo and Narcissus is an otherness of affection and difference, so too is the distinct origins of the spaces and roots presented in this book.

Read the full review of Echo in Four Beats on Yellow Rabbits here.

Book Riot’s Must-Read Poetic Voices from Split This Rock 2018 feat. Rita Banerjee’s Echo in Four Beats

Poet Christina M. Rau reviews the “Must-Read Poetic Voices from Split This Rock 2018” on Book Riot and features Rita Banerjee’s new poetry collection Echo in Four Beats (Finishing Line Press, March 2018).  She writes:

Split This Rock is an organization that “celebrates poetry that bears witness to injustice and provokes social change.” Every two years, they host a festival. This year, I was fortunate enough to attend its readings, workshops, and panels. In the tumultuous socio-political landscape of the United States today, poetry filled the air in DC. Voices rang out, speaking to a vast array of issues. Here are some of the voices we should be paying close attention to.

On my own panel, “Fantasy as Reality: Activism and Catharsis through Speculative Literature,” I was fortunate enough to sit beside Marlena Chertock and Rita Banerjee. Chertock uses her experience with skeletal dysplasia as a bridge to science writing. She spoke of a project she’s currently working on about imaging the future during climate change. Her current collection that includes a proposed application to NASA is Crumb-Sized: Poems. Banerjee’s work comes from a slant of decolonization and celebrating diverse writers. Echo In Four Beats is her latest project that re-imagines mythologies through language and power shifts.

This small round-up of voices is only a fraction of what Split This Rock had to offer. Line after line, moment after moment, action unfolded through poetry and then a literal walk to the White House in support of students protesting against gun violence. Reading these collections is one way to start to see a bigger picture of who we are as citizens of the world. That’s a great way to keep alive the conversations that began and continued at this festival.

Read the whole article on Book Riot here.