Small Press Traffic

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Antagonisms of Reality / Problems of Form

We are pleased to present two readings and a workshop curated by Violet Spurlock in December and January.

What are the risks of representational aesthetics when such images and narratives are easily commodified and coopted? What are the limits inherent to aesthetic styles which emphasize obscurity and refusal?

Violet Spurlock writes:

The series takes its title from Adorno's claim in Aesthetic Theory that art, instead of attempting to represent political antagonisms, ought to sublimate them into formal problems. I want to gather our attention around writers who challenge or respond to such a demand, writers whose work explores representation's limits and enacts resistance and marginalization formally. I think these writers are making exciting interventions that navigate dual risks of cooptation and obscurity. I am very honored to help bring their work into conversation and hopeful that you'll join us for these events.
Poupeh Missaghi

Poupeh Missaghi is a creative writer, scholar, editor, and translator (between English and Persian). Her debut novel trans(re)lating house one was published in 2020 (Coffee House Press) and her translation of Nasim Marashi’s novel I’ll Be Strong for You in 2021 (Astra House). She has a PhD in English and Literary Arts from the University of Denver; an MA in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD; and an MA in Translation Studies and a BA in Translation Practice from Azad University, Tehran. She has taught at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY, City University of New York, and Pacific Northwest College of Arts, Portland, OR, and is currently an assistant professor in literary arts and studies at the University of Denver. She works in innovative and hybrid prose, nonfiction, and fiction—as well as translation.

Anna Moschovakis

Anna Moschovakis works with poetry and prose as a writer, editor, translator, publisher, teacher, and designer. Her most recent books are the English translation of David Diop’s At Night All Blood Is Black (Frère d’âme), the Belladonna* chaplet from ‘Preliminary Notes on Risk,’ and the novel Participation. She was raised mostly in California and lives mostly in New York. 

alex cruse

alex cruse is a writer and interdisciplinary artist living on Chochenyo Ohlone land. Since 2015 cruse has performed with Kevin CK Lo as DROUGHT SPA, an audio-visual-kinesthetic experiment/research platform. cruse serves as Board President of Artists' Television Access, a volunteer-run screening venue and gallery in San Francisco, and is a PhD. student in Film and Digital Media at UC Santa Cruz.

Poetry collections include CONTRAVERSE (Timeless, Infinite Light, 2017) and ZERO ENERGY EXPERIMENTAL PILE (Compline, 2020). Writing and visual art can also be found in SPAM Zine, SFMOMA Open Space, Tripwire: a journal of poetics, The Poetry Project, baest: a journal of queer forms & affects, CLOG Journal, Terrain: Art & Crisis in Downtown Oakland, The Los Angeles Times, Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience, and elsewhere.
Benjamin Krusling

Benjamin Krusling is the author of Glaring (Wendy's Subway, 2020) and a forthcoming chapbook, It got so dark (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2022).

Violet Spurlock

Violet Spurlock is a writer living in the Bay Area. She is the author of Alloyed Bliss (Eyelet, 2021) and VS VS VS (GaussPDF, 2021). Her first full-length book, In Lieu of Solutions, received the Other Futures Award and is forthcoming from Futurepoem.