An Online Compendium and Accompaniment
Rob Halpern & Robin Tremblay-McGaw
In the process of editing From Our Hearts to Yours: New Narrative as Contemporary Practice, we realized that the book’s appearance in the world could also be the occasion for making available a set of archival documents and fugitive texts intimately related to our approach to New Narrative. These materials will serve ongoing scholarly and critical inquiries, while also enhancing any reader’s engagement with the book. In addition, we solicited three interviews with New Narrative writers, and these interviews are housed here exclusively. We also prepared an exhaustive Index of Keywords and Concepts to accompany the book as a finding aid in addition to the Index of Proper Names and Places included in the book itself (and even on its own, this second index offers its own pleasures as a poetic form!). The complete contents of our online accompaniment are as follows:
III. Left Write! Transcripts of 1981 Left Write Conference, edited by Steve Abbott (in two parts). Acknowledgements: The Bruce Boone Collection, The Poetry Collection of the University Libraries, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York. The Steve Abbott Collection, San Francisco Public Library. Gratitude to Alysia Abbott for permission.
IV. Archival documents related to the organization of the Left Write Conference. Acknowledgements: The Bruce Boone Collection, The Poetry Collection of the University Libraries, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York.
V. Soup 2, The New Narrative Issue, edited by Steve Abbott (in two parts). Acknowledgements: The Steve Abbott Collection, San Francisco Public Library. Gratitude to Alysia Abbott for permission.
VI. Three Interviews:
VII. Opening section to “Scandalous Narratives,” from Strategies of Deviance: Studies in Gay Male Representation, by Earl Jackson, Jr. (Jackson’s work in this chapter represents the first scholarly study of New Narrative in 1995, and it goes on to address the writing of Dennis Cooper, Kevin Killian, and Robert Glück).
From Our Hearts to Yours: New Narrative as Contemporary Practice offers the first comprehensive anthology of essays regarding New Narrative writing and community practices by a younger generation of practitioners and scholars. As editors Rob Halpern and Robin Tremblay-McGaw write in their introduction, “We are not interested in offering an ‘authoritative’ canon of New Narrative work, nor are we interested in consolidating an official version of New Narrative’s history. Rather, we want to use this as an opportunity to foreground New Narrative as a movement that is still coming into focus, a more or less unstable object that doesn’t want to be ‘fixed,’ codified, or hardened into a limited & limiting list of names and works. One of our motivating questions is Why New Narrative now? Or, What are the stakes of New Narrative for our contemporary moment? In other words, while we remain committed to a set of past works that have been identified as ‘New Narrative,’ we are equally committed to maintaining New Narrative as a dynamic and ongoing project, one with consequences for our present writing.” Roomy in the collective vision that they manifest, the twenty-four contributions to From Our Hearts to Yours address the AIDS crisis, the politics of race, the structural impacts of neo-liberalism on urban space, and the movement across queer, straight and transgender subject positions. Other topics of investigation include the category of queer art, the importance of “feeling,” the fiction of personality, the necessity of risk, the function of pedagogy, the strategy of appropriation, as well as scandal and gossip as these topics have been important to New Narrative and its expanded sphere of influence. Contributors include: Lindsey Boldt, Brandon Brown, David Buuck, Amanda Davidson, Robert Dewhurst, Thom Donovan, Joel Fares, Ariel Goldberg, Rob Halpern, Carla Harryman, Colin Herd, Kaplan Harris, Arnold J. Kemp, Trisha Low, Jason Morris, Trace Peterson, Ted Rees, Camille Roy, Kathy Lou Schultz, Eric Sneathen, Brian Teare, Robin Tremblay-McGaw, Catherine Wagner, and Stephanie Young.
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For a more comprehensive preview of the anthology's contents check-out PDFs of Rob Halpern's and Robin Tremblay-McGaw's introduction, "'A Generosity of Response': New Narrative as Contemporary Practice," and the Table of Contents.