Past Calls for Papers

CALL FOR PAPERS (extended deadline)

“Before and After Beat Exploded:
Essential Studies on ruth weiss.”

ruth weiss has worked for almost seven decades – and at 88 continues to work – with a plurality of artistic forms: she has authored around twenty poetry books, performed and recorded Jazz & Poetry, written more than ten plays, exhibited her water-color haiku paintings, acted in films and even written and directed one. As such, weiss embodies the artistic confluence of the 1950s and 1960s bohemia, breaking down, as Randy Roark writes, “the barriers between word, film, song, painting, and theatre”. Despite her extensive poetry career and very active participation in the West Coast buzzing artistic community since the early 1950s, weiss has remained an essentially overlooked figure in poetry history. This neglect might be representative – or shall we say a consequence – of the overshadowing of female artists within the Beat Generation as “a marginalized group within an always already marginalized bohemia” (Ronna C. Johnson).

Following her re-discovery in the course of Brenda Knight’s Women of the Beat Generation (1996), weiss’s work has benefitted from a boost in Beat-related academic and cultural activities in the last decades. Nevertheless, twenty years after the publication of Knight’s groundbreaking anthology, and despite the rekindled interest in the movement in general and in the work of women in particular, the Beat Generation academic niche is still lacking in terms of monographs and individual studies dealing with the work of female poets. Our book taps directly into this lacuna by providing up-to-date, comprehensive, critical analyses around one of the most prolific members of the so-called “Beat women”: ruth weiss.

            The collection of essays aims to include studies on all areas of weiss’s body of work – poetry, film, theater, performance or painting – as well as contrastive or comparative studies between ruth weiss’s poetics and aesthetics and that of other poets and artists, both inside and outside the scope of the Beat Generation. In order to respond to the existing cross-pollination between art forms in weiss’s oeuvre, this collection maintains a multidisciplinary approach that the editors consider not only essential when dealing with weiss’s poetry, but also a methodological necessity in the postmodern 21st century. As the first collection on the every-day trendier ruth weiss, this collection will be one of a kind, becoming a mandatory reading for all of those interested in the Beat Generation in general and “Beat women” in particular. With this in mind, the scope of this collection addresses:

  • detailed analyses of individual collections of poetry, as well as the position of ruth weiss as a Jazz & Poetry artist. In this regard, we are interested in historical accounts documenting the early years of innovation of Jazz & Poetry and weiss’s involvement in it, as well as her further development of the genre until today.
  • weiss’s personal biography and its effect on her poetic and artistic vision.
  • weiss’s involvement with the visual arts and the visual aspect in her poetry. In this regard, the collection explores both weiss’s involvement with visual arts such as painting or film and the influence of visual aesthetics in her poetry.
  • weiss’s use of poetic language in written and oral forms. Attention is paid in this respect to the performance aspect of weiss’s poetry, as well as to the way the poet plays with, bends and re-invents language.
  • weiss’s involvement in the Underground Film (The Brink, Ron Rice’s Flower Thief and Steven Arnold’s films), other audiovisual projects (ruth weiss meets her Prometheus [2007], Las Cuevas de Albion [2002]) – and the connections between these and weiss’s poetry.
  • weiss and the Beat Generation legacy: aesthetics, vision, and the issue of synchronicity.
  • weiss and literary genre. This includes essays paying attention to the mixture of genres in weiss’s oeuvre (lyric and narrative poem, travel journal, haiku, theatrical play, etc.)
  • adaptations of weiss’s work: Gerhard Samuel’s “Fortieth Day” – composed from weiss’s Desert Journal – and theatrical adaptations of her plays.
  • weiss’s collaborations and artistic network, which includes such diverse artists as novelist Jack Kerouac, poets Madeline Gleason, Philip Lamantia, Bob Kaufman, Anne Waldman, the painters Sutter Marin and Paul Blake, actor Taylor Mead, director Steven Arnold, a number of musicians (e.g., Sonny Wayne a.k.a. Sonny Nelson, Boo Pleasant, Doug Lynner), legendary stripper and comedian Carol Doda, etc.

Essays will be due December 31, 2017 and should be between 5000 and 6000 words in length. Interested contributors should send an abstract of 250–500 words with a short bio or their CV by April 12, 2017 to one of the editors,

Estíbaliz Encarnación Pinedo:

Thomas Antonic:

Pdf for distribution: ruth-weiss-cfp-ext_deadline

Call for Essay: Proposals for an MLA Volume on Teaching Beat Generation Literature
Proposals are invited for a volume in the MLA’s Options for Teaching series entitled Teaching Beat Generation Literature, to be edited by Nancy M. Grace. The purpose of the volume is to highlight key issues and pedagogical strategies for teaching Beat literature. The volume will include information for specialists and nonspecialists alike who are teaching at the secondary as well as undergraduate and graduate levels. A section or sections devoted to teaching resources will include teaching with images and film; teaching with anthologies; using electronic resources; and using editions, reference guides, collections of correspondence, biographies, and single author studies.
Possible topics are teaching the national and global contexts of Beat literature, major Beat writers, censorship and Beat literature, aesthetic lineages of Beat literature, Beats and the popular media, Beat fiction, Beat poetry, Beat drama, Beat film, Beat memoirs, gender and sex in Beat literature, race and ethnicity in Beat literature, Beat literature and the contemporary environmental movement, Beat writing and technology, the Beat road tale, the influence of music (jazz, in particular) on Beat writing, Beat composition philosophies and histories, drug use and Beat writing, spirituality and religious traditions in Beat writing, transhumanism and posthumanism in Beat writing, and the aesthetic and cultural legacies of Beat writing.
If you are interested in contributing an essay of 3,000 to 3,500 words, please send an abstract of 500 words in which you outline your approach or topic and how it might enhance the teaching of Beat literature to Nancy M. Grace ( by 1 July 2016.
Please note that any quotations from student papers will require written permission from the students.

The Allen Ginsberg Project

We would like to draw members  attention, particularly those not already familiar with it, to the extensive Beat Generation resources that are available, and that are continually being made available, on the Allen Ginsberg Project. Centered around Ginsberg, but by no means reduced or limited to him, the site offers text, image, audio, video, lecture-transcriptions, archival gleanings and updated news – a significant trove of material, much of it appearing for the first time. The Project, administered by the Ginsberg Estate, is always open for short posts, interactive write-ups and engaging contributions that
celebrate, explore and work to spread the word about Allen Ginsberg and The
Beat Generation. For further information, contact Peter Hale or Simon Pettet through the Project’s facebook page.



The Literary Encyclopaedia is looking for qualified writers to enhance its coverage of Beat writers and works. Among the titles most sought after are the following:

Biographical (general life& works overview) profiles of:

Gregory Corso
John Clellon Holmes
Diane Wakoski
Neal Cassady

Works profiles of:

Ginsberg’s “Howl”
Any other of Ginsberg’s works
Any of W. Burroughs’s works (except Naked Lunch, The Nova Trilogy and Blade Runner: A Movie)
Holmes’s novel Go
Works by Amiri Baraka
Other works by Beat writers or writers with Beat associations.

New propositions of writers/ works that are not currently present in our database are also welcome. All offers of contribution should come accompanied by an up-to-date CV and a short writing sample in the case of postgraduate students. The overwhelming majority (about 90%) of our contributors are academic scholars, while the remaining percentage is made up of very good doctoral students and independent researchers.

The Literary Encyclopedia has been published since 2000, and is a collaborative project of very considerable size. We have already published more than 11.5m words in contributions by more than 2300 colleagues. We have the eventual aim of providing literary scholars and students in the English-speaking world with a reliable and comprehensive reference work on all literary and cultural history throughout time and throughout the world. This publication already has 82 institutional subscribers, and is marginally in profit on annual account. The main aspects of the publication are described here

To explore The Literary Encyclopedia, please login with the case-sensitive username ‘SpringGuest2011’ and password ‘quijote1605’.

1 Response to Past Calls for Papers

  1. Anthony Coldman says:

    Dear Team,
    a couple of requests-
    1- will there be any Beat related happenings/literature festivals etc coming the the U.K.?
    I used to be know Franca Bellarsi well when she lived in the u.k. and would love to be in contact again; would appreciate if you could pass this information on! My phone no is 07981 131 9359 but would welcome an email, be able to be in touch!
    Many thanks


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