BA, University of Connecticut; MA, University College Dublin (Ireland); Ph.D., State University of New York at Buffalo
I am widely interdisciplinary in my interests, with an M.A. in Anglo-Irish Literature and study of Yeats, Blake, and other bardic figures that I put to use in teaching Irish Literature and various poetry classes, but my background is also firmly rooted in Walt Whitman and the American free-verse and experimental poetry traditions that draw on his conception of the poet's twin responsibilities to his or her own individuality and to the civic society the poet must engage. These are the dual emphases I bring to my teaching, as well as to my advising duties with RIT's literary magazine, Signatures .
I taught at Emory University and Michigan State University, among other schools, before coming to RIT, where I've taught for more than a decade. My dissertation was on Walt Whitman and Frank Lloyd Wright, but I also did considerable work on Post-WWII poetry, studying with the late poets Robert Creeley and John C. Clarke at Buffalo, and before that with George Butterick and Glauco Cambon at Storrs. I've had four NEH summer fellowships, studying Romantic Theory with Ernst Behler at the University of Washington, Print Culture in America with Carl Kaestle at the University of Chicago, and American Studies (twice) with Townsend Ludington, Joy Kasson, and John Kasson at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
My longtime interest in the Black Mountain poets has been rekindled of late. I taught a class in spring 2010 on Black Mountain College, edited a memoir and poem collection by Black Mountain alumna Martha Rittenhouse Treichler in fall 2010, and organized a three-day symposium called Black Mountain North in October 2010: www.blackmountainnorth.org/
Following from this, I created an Honors class in Beat & Black Mountain Poetry, and another class in Beat Literature. I continue to pursue my own poetry, alone and in collaboration with musicians like the Handmade Orchestra and the Chicago Scratch Orchestra. I served as a judge for Poets Walk, and as emcee for the Memorial Art Gallery reading celebrating this tribute to two centuries of poetry in the Greater Rochester area: artdrop.democratandchronicle.com/poets-walk
I am also on the Board of, and formerly President of, the Just Poets organization: thejustpoets.wordpress.com/