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Live Q&A with Mark Doty: ‘Queer Poetics’

This 5 December 2014, one of the mega-giants of American poetry, Mark Doty, will be live on CAMPUS and in conversation with Digital Poet in Residence, Jason Schneiderman.

Mark Doty was the first American poet to win the British T.S. Eliot Prize. One of the most important authors to write about HIV/AIDS in America, Doty’s vision of uncompromising love in the face of insurmountable obstacles earned him a significant following and a slew of prizes. Doty’s memoirs and essays have been as well received as his poems. Like Cavafy, Jarman, and Whitman, Doty is a celebrated writer with a special resonance for queer poets. Mark and Jason will discuss queer poetics, private consolations and whatever else comes up!

And as with all our Live Q&A’s, Mark will also be here to answer any questions you might have, which must be submitted in advance of the event. If you’d like to ask Mark a question, please post it below in the comments section.

Note: we’re expecting demand for this Live Q&A to be very high, so priority will be given to those who have asked a question.


Live Q&A with Mark Doty – Queer Poetics

When? – Friday 5 December, 4pm GMT

Where? – CAMPUS


To reserve your place on this free Live Q&A, please RSVP: [email protected]


Mark Doty’s Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems, won the National Book Award for Poetry in 2008. His eight books of poems include School of the Arts, Source, and My Alexandria. He has also published four volumes of nonfiction prose: Still Life with Oysters and Lemon, Heaven’s Coast, Firebird and Dog Years, which was a New York Times bestseller in 2007. The Art of Description, a handbook for writers, appeared in 2011. Doty’s work has been honored by the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a Whiting Writers Award, two Lambda Literary Awards and the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Nonfiction. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim, Ingram Merrill and Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Foundations, and from the National Endowment for the Arts. Doty lives in New York City and on the east end of Long Island. He is Professor/Writer in Residence at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Two new books are forthcoming, both from W.W. Norton: What Is the Grass, a prose meditation on Walt Whitman and the ecstatic, and Deep Lane, a new volume of poems.




  • Sarah Leavesley/James

    Okay, so I’m not very well-versed in queer poetics and the answer to the following may be self-evident to those who are, but I’m wondering how happy Mark Doty is with emphasis on queer poetics in his work and why? (I guess where I’m coming from with this is that I feel his poems have a far wider resonance than such labels might imply – Theories and Apparitions, for example. In all the poems, I’ve read, yes, some may be shaped by homosexual experience and yes, having that voice may be important for queer poets and poetics, but what really comes across for me from the poems is the sheer intelligence and humanity of them.)

    (Sorry if that’s a bit of a doh! question.)

    (My less serious question would be can Doty come back over and do another Arvon course and can I definitely have a place 😉 – the length of waiting list was unbelievable last time!)

  • Maggie Mackay

    Wow! Been reading him at uni but away that day. Lock him in over the weekend and I’ll be there on the Monday! haha. Have a fab time. ‘Deep Lane’ will be worth the wait. 🙂

  • Will Barrett (Poetry School)

    Hi Mark – you wrote something once about Ginsberg’s HOWL where you talked about ‘America’s wilful denial of queer sexuality’ at the time (and in this instance you make the point that HOWL probably wasn’t as influential as we think in liberating queer writers and detonating general cultural prejudice). It’s almost 60 years since HOWL, and America seems quite different; to choose one example, the Supreme Court only made a decision last October that suggests the inevitability of the right of same-sex marriage in every US state. So to put Ginsberg to one side, and looking with greater historical oversight, what other 20th and 21st century writers do you think have been more influential in this respect, and why?

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