A New Novel by Patrick Horrigan -- POST UPDATED 25 MARCH 2015

We are pleased to announce the upcoming publication of a new novel, Portraits at an Exhibition (Lethe Press, May 2015), by Patrick Horrigan (Professor of English).

The hero of the novel is a 21st-century Dorian Gray, an alienated young man searching for his life's purpose through a gallery of portraits at an exhibition.  Afraid he may have contracted HIV the night before and only beginning to fathom the possible consequences, Robin threads his way through the rooms of an art exhibition, studying portraits of people from faraway places and times, looking for clues in the lives of others to the mystery of his own discontent.  In the gallery, he bumps into a flesh-and-blood stranger with whom he feels an uncanny rapport.  Their meeting could change his life, but first he will have to confront a disturbing truth about himself.

Portraits at an Exhibition won the 2010 Dana Award in the Novel.  

Pre-order from Amazon.

The official launch party happens Wednesday, June 3, 2015, at 7:00 PM, at the Bureau of General Services--Queer Division, 208 West 13th Street, Room 210, in Manhattan.  All are welcome.


Professor Horrigan will be reading from his novel on the following dates this spring:

Friday, April 3, 7PM. The Gloria Maddox Theater, T. Schreiber Studios, 151 W. 26th St., 7th fl., betw. 6th and 7th Ave. (part of Cool Stories, a program of readings and performance hosted by Reggie Street)

Saturday, April 18, 3PM. Holiday Inn Midtown, 440 W. 57th St., betw. 9th and 10th Ave. (part of the 7th Annual Rainbow Book Fair)

Saturday, May 2, 7PM. Teatro Circulo, 64 E. 4th St., 3rd fl., betw. Bowery and 2nd Ave. (part of Actors with Accents, an evening of performance hosted by Eduardo Leanez and Patrick Horrigan)

A Reading By Lewis Warsh & Others

Professor Lewis Warsh (English Department) will read from his work at a group reading at the closing of Yevgeniya Baras's exhibition Of Things Soothsaid and Spoken at Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects.

Saturday, March 28, 2015 
208 Forsyth St. NYC

917 861 7312.

Lewis Warsh is the author of over thirty volumes of poetry, fiction and autobiography, including Alien Abudction (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2015), One Foot Out the Door: Collected Stories (Spuyten Duyvil, 2014), A Place in the Sun (Spuyten Duyvil, 2010) and Inseparable: Poems 1995-2005 (Granary Books, 2008). He is co-editor of The Angel Hair Anthology (Granary Books, 2001) and editor and publisher of United Artists Books. He has taught at Naropa University, The Poetry Project, SUNY Albany and Long Island University (Brooklyn), where he was director of the MFA program in creative writing from 2007-2013 and where he currently teaches. 

Monica McClure ’s debut poetry collection, Tender Data, will be published by Birds, LLC in spring 2015. She is the author of the chapbooks, Mood Swing, from Snacks Press and Mala, published by Poor Claudia.

Alexander Nemser ’s book The Sacrifice of Abraham, published by Bookieman with support from Asylum Arts, was named by The Jewish Daily Forward among “The Best Jewish Poetry of 2014.” His one-man show, “Moshe Feldstein, Icon of Self-Realization,” premiered in the 2011 New York Fringe Festival. He recently wrote, directed, and performed in a staged reading of “Peepshow,” a new play for five actors, at the Bowery Poetry Club.

Jeremy Sigler (b. 1968) is the author of numerous books of poetry including To and To (Left Hand books, 1998); Mallet Eyes (Left Hand Books, 2000), Crackpot Poet, (Black Square Editions, 2010); and ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ (The Kingsboro Press and For The Common Good, 2014).  Sigler co-edited the career retrospective monograph, Carl Andre: Sculpture as Place 1958-2010 (Dia Art Foundation and Yale University Press, 2014) 

Update From Jonathan Haynes

Professor Jonathan Haynes (English) will be going to the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference in Montreal March 25th to 29th. He will speak on a roundtable, "From Satellite to Center: Redressing the Marginalization of African Media Studies," and will be the respondent on a panel called "Nollywood Now: An African Industry in Transition."

A New Collection of Poems From Lewis Warsh

We are pleased to congratulate Professor Lewis Warsh (English) on the publication of his new collection of poems, Alien Abduction (Ugly Duckling Presse).

We received the following message from Daniel Owen, 
Presse Manager/Editor at Ugly Duckling (and alumnus of the LIU Brooklyn Creative Writing MFA program):

"Alien Abduction is Warsh’s first full-length collection of poems since Inseparable: Poems 1995-2005 (Granary Books, 2008). Here, he extends his exploration of the way fragments of thought and feeling and experience come together to form the illusion of a solid object that can explode into a million pieces at any moment. The whole is never the sum of its parts. A kind of doomsday hopelessness both invigorates and subdues all questions of what it means to be a living and breathing human. These poems are personal, direct, and elusive at the same time. With a cover by Max Warsh, printed letterpress at UDP on a Heidelberg Windmill."

Lewis Warsh is the author of over thirty volumes of poetry, fiction and autobiography, including One Foot Out the Door: Collected Stories (Spuyten Duyvil, 2014), A Place in the Sun (Spuyten Duyvil, 2014) and Inseparable: Poems 1995-2005 (Granary Books, 2008). He is co-editor of The Angel Hair Anthology (Granary Books, 2001) and editor and publisher of United Artists Books. He has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council of the Arts, The Poet’s Foundation and The Fund for Poetry. Mimeo Mimeo #7 (2012) was devoted to his poetry, fiction and collages, and to a bibliography of his work as a writer and publisher. He has taught at Naropa University, The Poetry Project, SUNY Albany and Long Island University (Brooklyn), where he was director of the MFA program in creative writing from 2007-2013 and where he currently teaches. He lives in Manhattan and in Western Massachusetts.

Creative Writing MFA Program Panel Discussion: The Current State of Literary Publishing

A New Book By Maria McGarrity

Congratulations to  Professor Maria McGarrity (English) on the upcoming publication of Allusions in Omeros: Notes and a Guide to Derek Walcott's Masterpiece (University Press of Florida, June 2015).

The book is available for pre-order at the publisher's website

Through 24 April 2015, get the book at a 60% discount by using the special discount code ACIS15 at checkout!

Graduate Courses -- Summer & Fall 2015

Winter is almost over! It's time to climb out of the doldrums and register for Summer and Fall classes!

These descriptions are provided by the instructors teaching the courses.

For more information, write to them directly.


ENG 528 Seminar in Creative Writing (Course ID# 2338)
The Prose Poem or Poetic Prose: Writing Fiction or Poetry
Professor Barbara Henning
Mondays & Wednesdays 6:00-8:55 PM

"Which of us, in his ambitious moments, has not dreamed of the miracle of a poetic prose, musical, without rhyme and without rhythm, supple enough and rugged enough to adapt itself to the lyrical impulses of the soul, the undulations of the psyche, the prickings of consciousness?" -- Baudelaire (Paris Spleen).

The prose poem is a border genre between fiction and poetry that seems particularly suited to speaking a consciousness, the consciousness that the reader and writer encounter line by line, paragraph by paragraph, a natural prose lyricism composed from ordinary thought and speech. A paragraph can also be seen as a block, a visual space, a different type of border. Besides introducing you to the prose poem, this course is also designed to survey some of the theories and poems from movements in modern and contemporary off-center poetry, such as imagism, surrealism, objectivism, the New York School, Language writing, Oulipo, etc. You will write prose poems (or flash fictions) in prose that interact with the ideas and theories put forth in the lectures and readings. If you are a poet, working with sentences and paragraphs might change your idea about what a poem is, revealing new possible rhythms, forms, approaches and possibilities with genre sliding. If you are a fiction writer, working with the prose poem may help you work on style and inventive structures for writing.  If you have questions about the course, contact Barbara at barbhenning@mac.com.

BARBARA HENNING is the author of three novels and eight books of poetry.  Her most recent books are Cities & Memory (2010);  Thirty Miles from Rosebud (2009); My Autobiography (2007); and Looking Up Harryette Mullen (2011).  A Day Like Today is forthcoming from Negative Capability Press. Born in Detroit, she has lived in New York City since 1983. Besides teaching for LIU, she also teaches for Naropa University.


ENG 579 Seminar in Special Studies (Course ID# 2339)
The Slave Narrative & Neo-Slave Narrative Fiction
Professor Louis Parascandola
Tuesdays & Thursdays 6:00-8:55 PM

This course will examine classic slave narratives: Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Jacobs’ Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. We will also read excerpts from the narratives of Olaudah Equiano and William and Ellen Craft. Our focus will be how these works are both public and personal documents as well as a blend of autobiography and fiction. In addition, we will look at several neo-slave narratives (contemporary fictional reworkings based on the original slave narratives including Toni Morrison’s Beloved and Octavia Butler’s Kindred. We will also watch sections of several films based on these works and examine some historical/critical writings treating the readings.

Requirements: One short take-home essay (3-4 pages), one-in class essay and quizzes. One longer project (8 pages). Students may write a traditional research paper on one or more of the narratives/fictions or write their own creative piece or lesson plan based on the readings.

FALL 2015

ENG 503 Theory of Writing (Course ID# 6062)
Remembering the Present
Professor Lewis Warsh
Mondays 6:30-9 PM

Writing theory is an all-encompassing endeavor. It must take into account both the past and the present while pointing instructively towards the future. Many great 20th-Century theorists were fiction writers and poets themselves--their theoretical work derived from their practice as creative writers. One goal of this course is to develop and articulate our own sense of what we want to do as writers and what we expect as readers. We will use the ideas expressed in these essays to inspire and inform our own work.

Another goal is to create a dialogue between ourselves and these authors. Ezra Pound's notable quote (I'm paraphrasing): "Don't take advice from anyone who hasn't written a great work" is something to keep in mind.  What gives anyone the right to theorize? One of the ongoing threads in this class will be an attempt to understand the place of theory in our work as writers, beginning with the inescapable question: “Is it necessary?”

Among the authors we will read are Henry James, Charles Baudelaire, E.M. Forster, Virginia Woolf, Ezra Pound, Laura Riding, Gertrude Stein, Roland Barthes, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Walter Benjamin, M.M. Bakhtin, Tzvetan Todorov, Maurice Blanchot, Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, Charles Olson, Frank O’Hara, Amiri Baraka, Jack Kerouac, Gary Snyder, Lyn Hejinian, among others.

ENG 509 Sociolinguistics & the Teaching of Writing (Course ID# 6063)
Professor Donald McCrary
Thursdays 6:30-9 PM

Due to under-enrollment, this course ywas converted to tutorial format (one-on-one with Professor McCrary).

This course examines the social foundation of language and the linguistic foundation of social life. More specifically, the course explores how language and society intersect to construct and, in many ways, control both individual and group identity. The relationship between language and society has relevance to the teaching of writing in that both teachers and students possess socially constructed knowledge of language that undergirds their understanding of writing competence. The course explores how sociolinguistic constructions such as class, race, gender, academic discourse, and education might impact upon writing performance. The course analyzes sociolinguistic theory and practice, including the works of L.S. Vygotsky, Victor Villanueva, Geneva Smitherman, and Susanne Romaine.

ENG 519 Editing
Professor John Killoran

Due to under-enrollment, this course was converted to tutorial format (one-on-one with Professor Killoran).

ENG 524 Poetry Writing Workshop (Course ID# 5069)
Parallel Worlds: Zen & the Poetics of Quantum (Where Are You in Time?)
Professor John High
Tuesdays 6:30-9 PM

Due to under-enrollment, this course was cancelled.

Looking back at the past & future in the present moment through multiple lenses, we might ask: How do things change while always remaining the same? In this workshop we will study how the New Physics and Eastern thought converge and for us, as writers, offer new possibilities in creating an innovative aesthetics of the 21st Century. How to write that which mirrors from the past & future—which was never really the past or future—but rather a gateway & portal into our actual existence(s) in the books we are writing. What if the imagination of our worlds is intimately interconnected with every text we have ever written and every moment of time we've experienced, while revolving in a series of reflecting mirrors? A block to creativity can arise from limitations of perception, including that of seeing language as separate from being, the poem as separate from humanity, the imagination as separate from daily life & time. In preparation for our workshops we will practice writing into the now; we will contemplate readings ranging from the Taoist & Chan masters dating back to the Tang Dynasty to contemporary thinkers in quantum physics. We will dialogue with writers, both “dead & alive,” at play in these vast openings of the literary field and ranging from the works of Emily Dickinson to Jorge Luis Borges, from Sun Ra to Nina Iskrenko. Our workshops will include an effort to vanish the borders between poetry & prose, designations between past, present & future, and roads between imaginary lives & fictional (what is real?) autobiographies. Parallel words/worlds: which ones can we access in order to open up completely to the writing that is quietly & persistently requesting our attention & knocking on the door of the Book.

ENG 526 Writing for Media I: The Story (Course ID# 5424)
Professor Gerard D. Brown III (Media Arts Department)
Thursdays 6-8:50 PM

For information about this course, contact the Media Arts Department.

ENG 529 Topics in Creative Writing (Course ID# 6064)
Life & Story: A Cross-Genre Seminar
Professor Sigrid Nunez (Visiting Writer)
Tuesdays 4-6:30 PM

Most writers, especially in their early work, draw from personal experience. In this seminar, we will explore what happens when you use material from life as a source for stories and questions such as: How do writers transform lived experience into prose? How do a writer’s memories become a work of fiction? What is the difference between the self who narrates an event from the past and the self who actually lived through it? What is the process involved in making a real person into a fictional character? How is it possible for a work to be autobiographical and anti-autobiographical at the same time, or for confessional writing to avoid narcissistic self-absorption?

Among the writers whose work we will read are Jamaica Kincaid, Joe Brainard, Alison Bechdel, NoViolet Bulawayo, J. M. Coetzee, Marjane Satrapi, William Maxwell, Tobias Wolff, Lydia Davis, and Phil Klay. Written assignments will allow students to turn their own experiences into stories that might be fiction, nonfiction, or hybrid narratives that include elements of both genres.

SIGRID NUNEZ is the acclaimed author of several works of fiction and nonfiction, including Sempre Susan: A Memoir of Susan Sontag, Salvation City, The Last of Her Kind, For Rouenna, and A Feather on the Breath of God. Her prizes and honors include the Whiting Writer’s Award, four Pushcart Prizes, the Civitella Ranieri Foundation Writing Fellowship and the Rome Prize in Literature.

ENG 625 Nineteenth-Century American Literature (Course ID# 6408)
Walt Whitman & Emily Dickinson
Professor Patrick Horrigan
Tuesdays 4-6:30 PM

An in-depth study of the two major American poets of the 19th century and their ongoing impact on American literature.  Using Emerson’s prophetic essay “The Poet” as a theoretical touchstone, we’ll cover major works by Whitman, including the 1855 edition of Leaves of Grass and Preface, the Calamus poems, Civil War poems, and Democratic Vistas.  During the second half of the semester we’ll read most of Dickinson’s lyrics and a selection of her letters.  Throughout we’ll trace Whitman’s and Dickinson’s influence on modern poets such as Hart Crane, Marianne Moore, Federico Garcia Lorca, and Allen Ginsberg.  Students will write short personal essays, research papers, and creative responses to Whitman and Dickinson.  They will also be required to memorize and recite passages and poems by both authors.

ENG 636 Seminar in Literary Periods & Movements (Course ID# 6533)
Dreamtigers & Beyond: Contemporary Latin American Writers Who Shook The World
Professor Jessica Hagedorn
Wednesdays 4-6:30 PM

Open to MA and MFA students.

What does it mean to be a writer’s writer? Why does literature matter? Sometimes a book comes along that is so daring, expansive and luminous that its impact and influence are powerful and immediate, felt by writers, readers, and anxious tyrants around the world. Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s classic One Hundred Years Of Solitude is one such book. More recently and to a somewhat lesser degree, one could argue that Eduardo Galeano’s Memory Of Fire trilogy and Roberto Bolaño’s The Savage Detectives and 2666 have had a similar impact on how we read and think about literature. In this seminar, we will do close readings of the translated novels, short stories, and non-fiction works of a select group of innovative and influential contemporary Latin American writers:  Jorge Luis Borges (Argentina), Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Colombia), Julio Cortazar (Argentina), Manuel Puig (Argentina), Mario Vargas Llosa (Peru), Eduardo Galeano (Uruguay), and Roberto Bolaño (Chile). The “dirty wars” and military coups of the 1970s, various social and literary movements (e.g. “Magical Realism” & “Infrarealism”) will provide plenty of fodder for investigation, analysis and lively discussion. MFA writers will use these close readings to learn more about the immense possibilities of their craft. Assignments will include presentations, response papers, and creative pieces inspired by the bold and visionary writers we are reading. A film screening and guest speakers will be incorporated into the syllabus.

ENG 646 Individual & Small Group Writing Instruction (Course ID# 4594)
Professor Patricia Stephens
Mondays 4-6:30 PM

This course introduces tutors to theories and practices of tutoring writing (one-to-one, online, and small groups), with an emphasis on the specific needs of writers who use the LIU Brooklyn Writing Center. This course is a practicum, which means that students will learn relevant theories and techniques for tutoring writing and reading as well as how to implement these theories and techniques within the context of actual tutoring sessions. In class, we will model and practice many of the techniques you will be asked to use in your various types of tutoring sessions (face-to-face sessions, online written responses, telephone tutoring, and small groups). Throughout the course, we will share tutoring experiences, for the purposes of increasing our understanding of what makes for effective tutoring in a variety of situations.  By the end of the semester, students will be able to more effectively implement a range of tutoring strategies, including:
  • assessing, diagnosing and responding to student writing;
  • developing strategies to teach planning, drafting, organizing, revising, proofreading, and editing;
  • actively supporting students in critical thinking and concept formation;
  • working on specific grammatical issues;
  • guiding students with effective reading comprehension and recall techniques;
  • responding to ESL concerns;
  • becoming aware of interpersonal dynamics and appropriate boundary-setting;
  • becoming aware of cultural, ethnic, and linguistic differences as they affect reading, writing, and the tutoring session;
  • knowing how to integrate tutoring work with other resources on campus by becoming familiar with the curriculum and pedagogy of the LIU Brooklyn Writing Program and interdisciplinary writing concerns (through WAC) on campus. 

    Voices of the Rainbow: Lara Vapnyar & Tayari Jones

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    A New Collection Co-Edited by Maria McGarrity

    We are pleased to announce the publication of Caribbean Irish Connections: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (University of the West Indies Press), co-edited by Professor Maria McGarrity (English Department, LIU Brooklyn) with Alison Donnell (University of Reading) and Evelyn O'Callaghan (University of the West Indies). The collection is now available for pre-order.

    Willie Perdomo Nominated for National Book Critics' Circle Award

    Congratulations to Willie Perdomo (MFA, Creative Writing, 2012) on the nomination of his poetry collection The Essential Hits of Shorty Bon Bon (Penguin Books) for a 2014 National Book Critics' Circle Award! 

    UPDATE 2 MARCH 2015

    The 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award finalists' reading will be happening at 6:00 PM on Wednesday, March 11, at the New School auditorium in Manhattan. DetailsFree and open to the public, this event provides a rare opportunity to see/hear an exciting roster of writers and poets who are nominated this year. Besides Willie, finalists include Claudia Rankine, Gary Shteyngart, Marlon James, and Saeed Jones, to name a few.

    If you are interested in attending the reading on the 11th, be sure to get in line by 5:30 PM.

    UPDATE 6 MARCH 2015

    On the occasion of his National Book Critics' Circle Award nomination, Willie gave this interview to NBC News.