The Powerlessness of Language: How to Write Poetry in Times of Crisis: Roman Osminkin and Pavel Arseniev (Russia) and Serhiy Zhadan (Ukraine)

Lecture | April 26 | 5:30-7:30 p.m. | 3335 Dwinelle Hall

 Roman Osminkin; Pavel Arsenyev; Serhiy Zhadan

 Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ISEEES), Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Townsend Center for the Humanities

Please join us for a poetry reading and performance by the experimental poets and artists Roman Osminkin, Pavel Arsenyev, and Serhiy Zhadan. The event will be conducted primarily in Russian.

Roman Osminkin is a radical leftist poet and artist from St. Petersburg. His poetry and performances engage with leftist politics, new media, music, and the realia of life in post-Soviet Russia. He is a performer and lyricist in the Techno-Poetry project, which he founded in 2010 and along with Pavel Arsenyev, participates in the Poetry Actionism Laboratory. A collection of is poetry titled “Not a Word About Politics!” (2016) has been published in English by Cicada Press.

Pavel Arsenyev is a poet, critic and artist based in St. Petersburg. He has published two volumes of poetry: “That which does not fit in the head,” (AnnaNova, 2005) and “Colorless Green Ideas are Sleeping Furiously” (*Kraft, 2011), as well as various critical and theoretical articles. His artwork has been exhibited at the Start Gallery, Winzavod, and the III International Biennial of Young Art. Arsenyev has carved out a new leftist cultural space as the founder and editor of the Russian critical-literary almanac [Translit], which has published biennially in St. Petersburg since 2005, and the *Kraft book series. With Roman Osminkin, he is a member of the Poetry Actionism Laboratory.

Serhiy Zhadan is a Ukrainian poet and short-story writer from Kharkov. His work blends humor, grit, and political dissent. His novel Voroshilovgrad (Deep Vellum, 2016), now available in English, illuminates the post-Soviet experience from the perspective of a man in his 30s summoned back to his rural hometown in Ukraine. In addition to his literary work, Zhadan has also collaborated with the Kharkov-based bands, Luk and Sobaki v Kosmosi.