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Michelle Nijhuis in Conversation With Elena Passarello

In the late 19th century, as humans came to realize that our rapidly industrializing and globalizing societies were driving other animal species to extinction, a movement to protect and conserve them was born. In Beloved Beasts (W. W. Norton), acclaimed science journalist Michelle Nijhuis traces the movement’s history: from early battles to save charismatic species such as the American bison and bald eagle to today’s global effort to defend life on a larger scale. Nijhuis describes the vital role of scientists and activists such as Aldo Leopold and Rachel Carson, as well as lesser-known figures in conservation history; she reveals the origins of vital organizations like the Audubon Society and the World Wildlife Fund; she explores current efforts to protect species such as the whooping…

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Delve Readers Seminar: Imagining the Future: Dystopic and Utopic Fiction

Many of us have described the past year as “apocalyptic” or “dystopian.” We’ve been living through a global pandemic, a critical presidential election, ravaging wildfires, and a national reckoning with our country’s legacy of racism and police violence. Utopic and dystopic fiction can help us make sense of our experience and ask questions about our future. In this seminar we’ll read three works of utopic and dystopic fiction written by women authors. In our reading and discussion of each text, we will focus on a few core questions: Who are we, as a society? Who do we want to be? What gets in the way of becoming the society we dream of? What do fictional dystopias and utopias teach us about what we fear and…

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Walidah Imarisha

Walidah Imarisha is an educator, writer, public scholar, and spoken word artist. She has edited two anthologies, Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction Stories From Social Justice Movements and Another World is Possible. Imarisha’s nonfiction book Angels with Dirty Faces: Three Stories of Crime, Prison, and Redemption won a 2017 Oregon Book Award. She is also the author of the poetry collection Scars/Stars, and in 2015, she received a Tiptree Fellowship for her science fiction writing. Imarisha has taught at Stanford University, Pacific Northwest College of Art, and Oregon State University; she recently joined the faculty of PSU’s Black Studies Program. For six years she presented statewide as a public scholar with Oregon Humanities’ Conversation Project on topics such as Oregon Black history, alternatives to incarceration, and the history of hip hop. She was one of…

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Attic Institute: WINTER Online: Craft of Memoir w Brian Benson | Mar 2 – Mar 30

Whether you’re just getting started or looking to improve your work-in-progress, this new workshop will help you translate your personal experiences into a vivid, absorbing memoir. Through a mix of discussion, guided exercises and peer critique, we’ll explore the many ways to pull compelling, relatable stories from one’s life story, and we’ll read and discuss a wide variety of memoir for inspiration and insight. Students will leave the workshop with many reading recommendations and writing resources. | Maximum 12 students Register for this workshop NOTE: To protect everyone during the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering our workshops via Zoom. All students must first sign up for a free Zoom account. Setting it up is easy. And we can help you with questions, if needed. For each class, you’ll receive a…

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Delve Readers Seminar: Dystopias of Turkish Modernity: Orhan Pamuk’s The Black Book and Bilge Karasu’s Night

This Delve seminar looks at two acclaimed authors of modern Turkish literature and their dystopian novels, The Black Book and Night. Dystopian narratives portray oppressive systems, and they display a deep suspicion of power structures and their alliance with scientific progress and technology. Published in 1985 in the aftermath of a brutal military coup in Turkey, Night depicts a violent secretive regime set out to murder its dissidents. Dystopian imagery of an unnamed city is permeated with dismembered bodies, silence, and angst. Reminiscent of Kafka’s works, Night raises the question of the relationship between power and justice. The multiple narrators of Night with their ever-shifting identities leave the reader with a profound sense of uncertainty. In a similar vein to Night, The Black Book (1990),…

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Delve Readers Seminar: Enrique Vila-Matas: On Writing

This Delve will focus on the work of perhaps one of the most celebrated contemporary Spanish authors, Enrique Vila-Matas (Barcelona, 1948) has been the recipient of numerous literary awards including the Premio Rómulo Gallegos, Prix Médicis and Premi Nacional de Cultura de la Generalitat. Widely translated and with a body of work that expands over 30 novels and several books of essays and short stories, Vila-Matas’ characters are writers who have stopped writing, who have fallen ill from reading too much literature or who muse in the folds and creases of their own theories about writing. To go mad from literature is intimately intertwined with the spirit of the Spanish novel, and so is the proliferation of quotes, the mysterious appearance of long lost manuscripts…

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Attic Institute: WINTER Online: Writing the New Poem Workshop w Ashley Toliver | Feb 23 – Mar 23

What happens when we expand our creative focus and let go of our expectations? In this workshop, we’ll use writing practices and generative techniques, explore poems and strategies, all with the goal of completing the workshop with a handful of new poems. Can we find liberation from the pressures we place on ourselves and our work? Join the experiment and let’s find out! Register for this workshop NOTE: To protect everyone during the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering our workshops via Zoom. All students must first sign up for a free Zoom account. Setting it up is easy. And we can help you with questions, if needed. For each class, you’ll receive a Zoom “invitation,” from the instructor. Click the link…follow the simple directions about the settings for your microphone and…

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Attic Institute: WINTER Online: Other Inspirations Poetry Workshop w Matthew Dickman | Feb 22 – Mar 22

In this class we will be exploring Ekphrastic Poetry and looking to painting, photography and music as our inspiration. Can ekphrastic poetry be more than a reflection or comment on a piece of art? Can it be more than a beautiful description of another piece of art? We will find out together through looking at the paintings, photographs, and music that has inspired great poems– as well as writing our own. Register for this workshop NOTE: To protect everyone during the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering our workshops via Zoom. All students must first sign up for a free Zoom account. Setting it up is easy. And we can help you with questions, if needed. For each class, you’ll receive a Zoom “invitation,” from the instructor. Click the link…follow the simple…

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Lysley Tenorio

Lysley Tenorio is the author of the novel The Son of Good Fortune and the story collection Monstress, which was named a book of the year by the San Francisco Chronicle. He is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, a Whiting Award, a Stegner fellowship, the Edmund White Award, and the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as residencies from MacDowell, Yaddo, and the Bogliasco Foundation. Tenorio’s stories have appeared in The Atlantic, Zoetrope: All-Story, and Ploughshares, and have been adapted for the stage by The American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and the Ma-Yi Theater in New York City. Born in the Philippines, he lives in San Francisco, and is a professor at Saint Mary’s College of California. **Register here for the Lysley Tenorio reading. A link will…

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Attic Institute: WINTER Online: So You Wanna Be a Writer Workshop w Wayne Gregory | Feb 18 – Mar 18

“Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” ~ E. L. Doctorow You have a thousand stories inside your head. You dabble on the page but rarely if ever finish anything, much less share with others. “Is my work good enough?” you wonder.  “Do I have something original and interesting to say? What makes me think I can be a writer?”  The biggest obstacle for emerging writers is not lack of time nor lack of skill nor lack of things to write about. It’s a lack of self-confidence. This workshop is designed for those who want to be writers, but are not sure they can be. …

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