The ASU Department of English's Creative Writing Program presents its MFA Reading Series, this installment featuring poet Rachel Blau DuPlessis.

DuPlessis (PhD, Columbia University, 1970) is known as a poet and essayist, and as a critic and scholar with a special interest in modern and contemporary poetry. From 1986 until 2012, DuPlessis has been engaged in a long poem project, collected in several book-length installments from Wesleyan University Press and Salt Publishing. The newest book, Surge: Drafts 96-114 (Salt 2013), brings this 26-year long poem to a temporary fold. Books belonging to this project are Drafts 1-38, Toll (Wesleyan, 2001); DRAFTS. Drafts 39-57, Pledge with Draft, Unnumbered: Précis (Salt Publishing, 2004); Torques: Drafts 58-76 (Salt Publishing, 2007) and Pitch: Drafts 77-95 (Salt Publishing, 2010). This work in poetry is the subject of an online colloquium and set of essays published in Jacket2 in December 2011 (

Her recent Purple Passages: Pound, Eliot, Zukofsky, Olson, Creeley and the Ends of Patriarchal Poetry (University of Iowa Press, 2012) is part of a feminist trilogy of works about gender and poetics that includes The Pink Guitar: Writing as Feminist Practice and Blue Studios: Poetry and its Cultural Work, both from University of Alabama Press. Another key critical book by DuPlessis is Genders, Races, and Religious Cultures in Modern American Poetry, 1908-1934 (Cambridge University Press, 2001). DuPlessis was a Distinguished Visitor in the English Department at the University of Auckland, has held an appointment to the National Humanities Center in North Carolina, and was awarded a residency for poetry at Bellagio, sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation.

The MFA Reading Series is co-sponsored by the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing.

Wednesday, Oct. 23, 12 p.m

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