Katja Kolcio, associate professor of dance, writes about the role dance organizations played in developing dance as an academic discipline in her new book. Ph.D programs in dance, for example, were not available in the 1950s and 60s. (Photo by Stefan Weinberger '10)
This issue, we ask 5 Questions to . . . Katja Kolcio, associate professor of dance, and author of the new Wesleyan University Press book Movable Pillars Organizing Dance, 1956–1978.
Q: How did you become involved with the “Branching Out, Oral Histories of the Founders of Six National Dance Organizations” assignment, which led to your book?
A: In 2001, I was invited by the American Dance Guild to conduct interviews with founders of six major American dance organizations. Marilynn Danitz and Margot Lehman, past presidents of the Guild, conceived of the project. These organizations were founded in the ’50s and ’60s, and have had an important impact on dance in the United States since then. Many of their founders were getting older and had not been properly recognized for their tremendous contributions. This was an effort to talk with some of those pioneers and to document their recollections.
Q: Why did you focus on the founders and history of six particular organizations?
A: These organizations (the Congress on Research in Dance, the American Dance Therapy Association, the American College Dance Festival Association, the Dance Critics Association, and the Society of Dance History Scholars and the American Dance Guild) are all somewhat affiliated with one another, in one way or another. Many of the founders knew one another because most were on the East Coast or in New York City. The 20-year period within which they emerged marks a significant
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Brenda Hillman’s book, Practical Water, published by Wesleyan University Press in 2009, was named a 2009 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist in the Poetry category. The 124-page book is part of the Wesleyan University Press’s Poetry Series.
Publishers Weekly says “Hillman’s eighth collection of poems is the third in her series of book-length meditations on the elements. In these aesthetically challenging, yet often surprisingly clear poems, which span the personal, political and environmental, water is simultaneously a transparent vessel, a mirror and an endangered resource. This is one of the most unusual and compelling books so far this year.”
A book published by Wesleyan University Press is a 2009 finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award.
Versed, by Rae Armantrout, was honored in the poetry category. The finalist reading will be held at 7 p.m. March 10 at The New School in New York, N.Y. The reading is free and open to the pubic.
Rae Armantrout is a professor of writing and literature at the University of California, San Diego. Her book also is a National Book Award Finalist.
For more information on the book click here.
Wesleyan University Press received a $50,000 grant from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, to support publication of five books in 2010, as part of a new series.
The grant includes fuding for four distinct types of poetry book, including second books and translations, and for a book in any genre by a Connecticut author. Together the books will be known as the “The Driftless Series.” Driftless books for 2010 will include: Exposition Park by Roberto Tejada, Rococo and Other Worlds by Afzal Ahmed Syed, translated by Musharraf Farooqi, Elegguas by Kamau Brathwaite, A Spicing of Birds: Poems by Emily Dickinson, selected and introduced by Jo Miles Schuman and Joanna Bailey Hodgman and Balasaraswati: Her Art and Life by Douglas M. Knight, Jr.
The Driftless Series is funded by the Beatrice Fox Auerbach Foundation Fund at the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.
This photograpy book was published by Wesleyan University Press in October 2009.
Wesleyan University Press published a photographic book about the Connecticut River Oct. 23. The photographs in The Connecticut River: A Photographic Journey Through the Heart of New England follow this major waterway for 410 miles, from its origin near the Canadian border to its wide mouth on Long Island Sound, giving readers a vivid portrait of a living artery of the New England landscape. Middletown is featured in the book.
Author and photographer Al Braden opens the book with an essay introducing important aspects of the river, and Chelsea Reiff Gwyther, executive director of the Connecticut River Watershed Council, closes with an essay that succinctly highlights the environmental pressures that the river faces.
The book has 136 full-page color photos, ranging from close-ups to dramatic aerials, to reveal the river as few people are privileged to experience it. Readers will see and learn about many facets of the river, including its landscape, history, development, conservation, geologic formations, flora and fauna, and, of course, the moods of the water, sky, and riverbank. Informative captions provide a wealth of information about the images, which depict every¬thing from pristine misted mornings to rich valley farmlands and modern hydroelectric turbines. The Wesleyan University Press book is $35 and available online.
Wesleyan University Press published the award-winning book.
A book published by Wesleyan University Press is a 2009 National Book Award Finalist in the poetry category.
Versed, by Rae Armantrout, offers readers an expanded view of the arc of the author’s writing. The poems in the first section, “Versed,” play with vice and versa, the perversity of human consciousness. They flirt with error and delusion, skating on a thin ice that inevitably cracks. In the second section, “Dark Matter,” the invisible and unknowable are confronted directly as Armantrout’s experience with cancer marks these poems with a new austerity shot through with her signature wit and stark unsentimental thinking.
Together, the poems of Versed part us from our assumptions about reality, revealing the gaps and fissures in our emotional and linguistic constructs, showing us ourselves where we are most exposed.
Rae Armantrout is a professor of writing and literature at the University of California, San Diego.
Suzanna Tamminen, director of the Wesleyan University Press, received a grant worth $4,000 from the J.M. Kaplan Fund. The award, presented July 24, will fund publication of a book by Ann Cooper Albright titled An Artist Inspired: Abraham Walkowitz on Isadora Duncan.
My Vocabulary Did This to Me: The Collected Poetry of Jack Spicer, edited by Peter Gizzi and Kevin Killian, published by the Wesleyan University Press, is one of the winners of the 30th annual American Book Awards for 2009.
The awards are presented by the Before Columbus Foundation and will be formally award on Sunday, Oct. 11 in New York, N.Y.
The Wesleyan University Press edition features original sketches.
Jules Verne’s The Kip Brothers, published in English by Wesleyan University Press in 2007, was mentioned in a May 11 Huffington Post article titled “Jules Verne’s Kip Brothers Translated into English after 100 Years.”
The Wesleyan University Press book features original black and white illustrations.
The article says: “The book, a crime drama, celebrates the fraternal bonds of brotherhood, written shortly after the death of Verne’s brother and best friend, a French sailor. The bond between the two heroes is so close it raised the question in this writer’s mind whether gay relationships could have been written about openly in Victorian France?”
The Wesleyan University Press and the Center for the Arts have received a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grants in December 2008.
Wesleyan University Press received a $35,000 grant to help publish the work of the following poets: Kazim Ali, Rae Armantrout, Adrian Blevins, Kamau Brathwaite, Brenda Hillman, Ed Roberson, Afzal Ahmed Syed, Roberto Tejada and Tan Lin.
The Center for the Arts received $10,000 grant to help fund the “Breaking Ground Dance Series and DanceMasters Weekend.