Profile: Linda Gregerson
Ph.D., Stanford 1987
Linda Gregerson on the Workshop
Our aim in workshop is at once very simple and very complex: we make it our business to become an adaptable and rigorous critical readership for one another's work-in-progress. We use the workshop as an occasion to broaden formal and thematic range, to refine editorial skills, to share questions, enthusiasms, and generous skepticism. Our primary focus is on the current work submitted by members of the class, but we also read selected work by other poets, generally contemporaries in mid-career.
This term, I asked each member of the workshop to teach a single 45-60 minute session on poetry that was neither her own nor that of another member of the workshop. Workshop members chose groups of poems or individual volumes of poems that raised questions or issues of urgency for us in our own writing. We tended to focus on work we admired, but we also considered poetry that seemed to us to fail in some major way, or to cheat, to take admirable risks with mixed results, or to explore unpredictable intersections of voice and form and subject matter. We also found this an invaluable opportunity to consider questions of structure and sequencing in book-length collections of poetry, questions of immediate relevance to those who are now assembling the MFA thesis.A sample from Linda Gregerson's work:
From The Woman Who Died in Her Sleep, "Fish Dying on the Third Floor at Barneys," published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Literature and culture of the English Renaissance; historical subject formation; the politics of Reformation and early modern nationalism; Petrarchan lyric; Elizabethan and Stuart drama; contemporary American poetry; creative writing.
History and theory of performance