Folkland Book Club featuring books from Small Press Distribution


Join us for a monthly book club featuring titles from Small Press Distribution. Pick up a free copy of our May book at the April Book Club meeting (4/24), or at the Main Library Reference desk starting on April 25 while supplies last.


by Lyn Hejinian

POSITIONS OF THE SUN is a sometimes melancholy, sometimes militant cross-genre experiment, combining elements of (largely non-narrative) fiction, with those of local journalism, and of cultural and literary criticism. Its twenty-six interlocking "essays with characters" (plus a "Coda") explore the mid-2000s financial "crisis," the spread of neoliberalism, and attempts by activists and artists to counter it, through the movements and daily lives of a wide-ranging cast of characters located in the Bay Area. In POSITIONS, Hejinian plays the bricoleur, bringing together whatever's needed in her approach to the subject, whether it's the paratactic tactics of poetry, scholarship's critical patchwork, or characters set in time that evokes but frustrates narrative. POSITIONS OF THE SUN is the second work in Belladonna*'s Germinal Texts Series, which seeks to trace feminist avant-garde histories and the poetic lineages they produce.


Lyn Hejinian teaches at the University of California, Berkeley, where her academic work is addressed principally to modernist, postmodern, and contemporary poetry and poetics, with a particular interest in avant-garde movements and the social practices they entail. She is the author of over twenty-five volumes of poetry and critical prose, including POSITIONS OF THE SUN (Belladonna*, 2018), The Unfollowing (Omnidawn Books, 2016), THE WIDE ROAD (with Carla Harryman, Belladonna*), SITUATIONS, SINGS: COLLABORATIVELY COMPOSED POEMS (with Jack Collomb, Zephyr Press, 2007), THE BEGINNER (Tuumba Press, 2002), SLOWLY (Tuumba Press, 2002), HAPPILY (The Post-Apollo Press, 2000), and SIGHT (with Leslie Scalapino, Edge Books, 1999). With Barrett Watten, she is the co-editor of A Guide to Poetics Journal: Writing in the Expanded Field 1982- 1998, and the related Poetics Journal Digital Archive(Wesleyan University Press, 2013/2015). She is the co-director (with Travis Ortiz) of Atelos, a literary project commissioning and publishing cross-genre work by poets, and the co-editor (with Jane Gregory and Claire Marie Stancek) of Nion Editions, a chapbook press. In addition to her other academic work, she has in recent years been involved in anti-privatization activism at the University of California, Berkeley.

Our Book Club moderator, Nirvana Shahriar is a senior undergraduate student at the University of California, Berkeley. A lover of language and literature, she studies English and Linguistics. Her love for language, and interest in both the written and spoken word has led her to facilitate classes at UC Berkeley that are structured around literature, like book clubs. Experienced in facilitating and leading discussion, Nirvana is looking forward to more literary reads with new folks and faces.


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