An Econ Salon: poetry & the recession

Econ Salon / Poetry & the Recession / Poetry readings by Jules Boykoff, Allison Cobb, and Kaia Sand. Cynthia Nelson will perform her “Money Song” and brand-new “Sand Dollars/Paper Dollars” on Thursday, October 7 / Thurs. Oct 7. / 7 PM / 412 NW Couch Street / The Happy Valley Project in Studio 414

Jules Boykoff is the author of Hegemonic Love Potion (Factory School, 2009) and Once Upon a Neoliberal Rocket Badge (Edge Books, 2006). His political writing includes Landscapes of Dissent: Guerrilla Poetry & Public Space (co-authored with Kaia Sand) (Palm Press, 2008), Beyond Bullets: The Suppression of Dissent in the United States (AK Press, 2007), and The Suppression of Dissent: How the State and Mass Media Squelch USAmerican Social Movements (Routledge, 2006). His writing has appeared recently in The Nation, The Guardian, and Wheelhouse Magazine. He teaches politics and writing at Pacific University and lives in Portland, Oregon.

Allison Cobb is the author of the poetry collection Born2 (Chax Press) about growing up in Los Alamos, New Mexico, (birthplace of the atomic bombs) and the just-published Green-Wood, a work of poetic nonfiction (Factory School). She lived for many years in Brooklyn, New York, where she worked for an environmental organization. She now lives in Portland, where she is working on an investigation of plastic.

Cynthia Nelson has toured widely with her bands Ruby Falls, Retsin, and The Naysayer. Living in New York City off and on for fourteen years had her wrangling with its poetry scene and publishing three collections with the then-fledgling Soft Skull Press, most recently The Kentucky Rules, which chronicles time spent living in Louisville. Her final opus to New York, Libertina Serenade, is due out next year. She recently completed her MFA in Poetry at Bard College, and a collection of her work there is called Space in a Barely Moment.

Kaia Sand’s book, Remember to Wave (Tinfish Press) investigates political geography in Portland, Oregon, which takes the form of a poetry walk. She is also the author of a poetry collection, interval (Edge Books 2004), and co-author with Jules Boykoff of Landscapes of Dissent: Guerrilla Poetry and Public Space (Palm Press 2008). Sand has created several chapbooks through the Dusie Kollektiv, which also published her wee book, lotto. Her poems comprise the text of two books in Jim Dine’s Hot Dreams series (Steidl Editions 2008). She is currently working on the Happy Valley Project, a multi-media poetry project investigating foreclosures and the uneven distribution of shelter.

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About thehappyvalleyproject

The Happy Valley Project is a poetic investigation of the relationship between housing foreclosures and financial speculation. Grappling with the high finance that furthers our economic turmoil seems like a good job for poetry. I borrowed the name of this project from the nearby city that experienced such a high foreclosure rate after the housing bubble burst. This project gathers poets, musicians, economists and others, using poetic form, video, installation pieces, economics lecture, and music. A key format for the Happy Valley project is the Econ Salon, gatherings around economics in various cultural formats (bistros, studios, galleries, etc). The Econ Salons began during the early days of the TARP bailout for financial institutions in 2008 when so many of us were quickly learning about the financial mess (here is a description of past econ salons). Now, two years later, I am interested in furthering those efforts through a poetic practice that brings together vigilance, investigation, and conversation. This project is funded by the Regional Arts and Culture Council.
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