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Disability Poetics is a series of short videos featuring poets reading their poetry and then discussing how their perception and work relates to what constitutes Disability Poetics. Curated by Kenny Fries, the ten selected disabled poets represent a diverse range of disabilities, generations, and backgrounds, creating both a virtual disability poetry community, as well as a resource for poets, disabled and nondisabled alike.
The overarching purpose of this project is to leverage Fries’ privilege as a pioneer in disability arts to foster an enduring connection between generations of disabled artists. This project is one of several that collectively fills historical and cultural gaps as well as examines the historical and contemporary importance of legacy in disability culture, a more urgent goal during the current coronavirus pandemic. The pandemic has brought to the surface the vulnerability of those who live with disabilities caused by the lack of knowledge and misunderstanding of disabled lives.
Disability Poetics features the poetry of Kay Ulanday Barrett, Sheila Fiona Black, John Lee Clark, Meg Day, torrin a. greathouse, Cyrée Jarelle Johnson, Travis Chi Wing Lau, Stephen Kuusisto, Naomi Oritz, and L. Lamar Wilson.
Funding for Disability Poetics is supported in part by a three-year multi-project grant awarded to Kenny Fries by the Canada Council for the Arts and by the Office of Interdisciplinary Programs and Outreach in the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University.