Foetry.Com
November 26, 2014, 03:40:07 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Foetry.Com v.2 Forum Archive Through May 2007
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Pages: [1] 2 3
  Print  
Author Topic: I'm talking Foetry  (Read 28409 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
alan
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1314



WWW
« on: May 11, 2005, 04:49:45 PM »

This is a way-too-long post that includes emails back and forth from Virginia Quarterly Review editor, Ted Genoways, and my "interview" with him.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2010, 08:07:17 AM by alan » Logged

"You especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it -- don't cheat with it.” -- Ernest Hemingway
__________________________________
Alan Cordle
Vermeer
Newbie
*
Posts: 210



« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2005, 02:03:09 AM »

Seems that once again Graham is selecting the forum in which she can put forth her case with answering questions. The names thrown out by VQE seems cozt to the side of the Foets. Why not include more big names who would take an alternative view. William LOgan might be one. David Orr? Any other names. Is this a serious offer from VQR?
Logged
alan
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1314



WWW
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2005, 08:18:05 AM »

You'll notice my hesitation -- my back and forth with Genoways.  I asked him if I could address Graham.  I asked him if he would get a legal opinion from UVA's law school.  I told him that other publications were doing stories.

Then when I gave him my responses, which were likely ones he didn't want to hear, he never wrote back.  I even asked him a second time if he got them.  Is VQR really going to make Charles Wright look bad?

I think the VQR was hoping to do another Steve Burt-style smear piece, which is why I've posted the questions and answers here.  Who knows?  Maybe I'm a little paranoid at this point, but I think by I've given foetry.com readers the opportunity to decide by publishing the questions and answers myself.
Logged

"You especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it -- don't cheat with it.” -- Ernest Hemingway
__________________________________
Alan Cordle
Kate Bernadette Benedict
Newbie
*
Posts: 34



WWW
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2005, 08:27:48 AM »

They harped much too much on the anonymity issue.   After all, what has that to do with the issues that were raised  here?  As always in the media, it seems, personalities are prior to substance.  

It even happened here, with the comments about Prof. Graham's teaching techniques, looks, etc.   Fascinating in a gossipy sort of way, but not relevant to her actions.

I have this sweet fantasy that JG will speak frankly and say something like"  "You know, out of love for my students and S.O., and out of admiration for their work, I probably did overlook equally worthy manuscripts.  It won't happen again.  And I support reform."  In my dreams?
Logged

i]I gotta lotta livin' to do.[/i]
Monday Love
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1130



« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2005, 09:13:38 AM »

I think Alan handled himself extremely well.   Good job, Alan.  

As for the motives of Vir Q, I withhold judgement at the moment.   Their current silence seems suspicious, if not rude, but we'll let that pass.

If they publish something, and do ask tough questions of some contest foets, they'll get my applause.

Of course it's ridiculous that they have to go after Alan in this manner:  "Isn't it true that you wrote a poem in 1989?"   Or his wife.  They want this to be all about one person's "sour grapes."  It's sad that the foets have to play "shoot the messenger."  It's quite obviously their strategy, and given the significant systemic corruption in poetry, it just makes them look more pathetic.   So that strategy is going to backfire.   But what can they do?   People are talking about them--and everyone has a conscience.   I'm sure they are going nuts.   This exposure wasn't supposed to happen.   For instance, I'm sure it's just not the same when friends and colleagues look at Jorie and Peter Sacks now.   Not quite the same.  

What a few people knew, now a lot of people know.   This is good, because social preeminence does shape all sorts of other judgements, including aesthetic ones.  This opens up peoples' eyes in a good way, even though, yes, it does hurt some people personally.  Why shouldn't the audience know not only the poetry but the chess game behind the poetry, which was always partly hidden, and yet right in front of them, the chess game of poetic and social reputation?  It does interact with all sorts of other knowledge, and thus it is good that it is known.  It is good for Letters in the long run.  I wouldn't sign on to this fight if I didn't feel this were the case.  

I'd like to know if there are any people who feel differently, and why.

Keep up the good work, Alan.   Let them 'have at you.'  The more they do, the more your folk-hero status grows, in my eyes, anyway.

Monday Love
Logged

hisper and eye contact don't work here.
Matt
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1063



WWW
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2005, 02:12:02 PM »

Hi Alan,

I enjoyed your interview.  I'm not sure what VQ is going to do (if anything) with it, so I guess we'll see, but . . . .

There was something that bothered me in Ted's questions' tone.  It was the same quality in the rhetoric of other blogs and news articles that initially aggravated me and led me to join this forum.  All of his questions seem to be subtextual attempts to personally discredit you or fish for hypocrisies.  

These are the kinds of questions that should be leveled at Jorie Graham or other foets.  I can see maybe asking one such question of you in an interview, but the rest of the questions should be about your mission or about the state of poetry/foetry today.  It’s as if no one is really concerned about the actually issue at hand: a sick PoBiz.

So, again, I say that this tone (which seems to be the prevailing one outside of Foetry.com and a few other like-minded blogs) is the rhetoric of power.  That a rhetoric of power should be so widespread in an artistic field like poetry is deeply disturbing to me.  I expect to hear it out of the mouths of corporate PR departments or the Bush administration . . . but out of the mouths of poets and poetry editors, it nauseates.

Alan, I believe you are a “man of the people”, doing a yeoman’s duty, serving justice with democratic advocacy.  Just doing this, being this, has made the true colors of those who oppose you increasingly visible.  And once again, I stand behind you and sympathize and rally, because you are the advance guard running forward with a target on your chest, a flag bearer.

You handled the interview (even if it may disappear) with aplomb, integrity, and utter sanity, and I commend you.  I know I would have faired much worse in your shoes.

Thank you, once again, for doing what you are doing and for doing it so well.

Yours,
Matt

PS: To all of this forum’s members, I think it continues to be apparent that although the PoBiz is paying some attention to Alan and Foetry.com, it is not yet ready to acknowledge that Alan’s endeavor has any credibility (not surprisingly).  So, I reiterate my challenge to all of us to put that credibility behind this forum in the form of intelligent conversation and sharp criticism and credible anti-foetry.  Not because we should be caught in the trap of having to prove to the biz and the foets that we are credible, but because it will give us mass and muscle.  We don’t need to convince the foets or the PoBiz; we need to impact the people who populate the community of poetry, because they (we) are the victims and the dupes.  Also, they/we are the real backbone of poetry.  The foets, grandstanders, po-industrialists are just the same as any powerful elite: small in number and dependent on all of us playing by their rules.

If Alan is carrying the flag at the front, we need to be the army behind him.
Logged

Funk not only moves, it can RE-move, dig?"
      --Sir Lollipop Man (Alias, the Long-Haired Sucker)
Vermeer
Newbie
*
Posts: 210



« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2005, 02:34:40 PM »

...that the point of this was to do a pre-emptive strike since they cannot control the press or the continuing release of public information. And the venues keep changing as more information is released and more individuals such as David Orr express their opinion and weigh in.

Additionally, I wonder if the names they announced on the Foetry side indicate anything: Janet Holmes, Jorie Graham, Charles Wright. Additionally, their (Holmes, etc.) comment was to be in the form of essays. If an interview Graham could be asked precise questions, including her thoughts on the Holmes comment about why she (Holmes) came in second at the National Poetry Series when Graham judged.

If they want balance they should include Robert Bly, William Logan, David Orr, Dana Gioia, Greg Kuzma to weigh in on the writing programs and the Foetry issues.

I think a more realistic way to look at this is to ask every contest Ms. Graham has judged to release the number of submissions, the amount of money taken in, who won and the relationship of winner to judge (which Foetry has already documented). This could be like a visual aid -like in grammar school- to supplement the pros and cons.

Mr. Genoways announced that he knew of "two cases" that were worse examples of cheating than anything uncovered at Foetry.com and yet he did not reveal them. Mr. Genoways is not going to out Charles Wright or anyone in the MFA Program orbit. There is nothing to be gained there for Foetry.com.

I don't think there is anything to be gained there. If Ms. Graham wishes to clear everything up she could simply go on NPR and take telephone calls and answer every question. That would do it. Who needs VQR?
Logged
Vermeer
Newbie
*
Posts: 210



« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2005, 05:46:14 PM »

Matt jumped in ahead of me while I was typing so let me reply to Matt's post.

I think Orr was saying an interesting thing in the NYTimes article which is that awards etc. are handed out by "regular old people." The whole business is a deck of cards as it is an artifically inflated artistic genre (empire-fake). Take away the NEA money, the state money, the writing program money, get rid of the writing programs and see how many poets you have left.

For a very long time poets have been afraid to raise their voice about these abuses, unless they're Bukowski, Henry Rollins or someone who just doesn't care. It's all predicated by the fact that it involves jobs, you don't know who is sitting on the next grant panel, etc. It seems like getting to be on a panel at AWP is considered a big deal in the po-biz world.

It has become this whole culture of ingratiation - you work for it, you desire it, you need it. Who stands up? I stood up and I've done my bit over the years but it made me a lot of enemies. It's not fun because these people (poets/foets) are so emotionally attached to certain things (their jobs, their teachers who pulled srings for them, the idea and experience of the Writing Workshop where they excelled because they were good ingratiators). Now don't get me wrong I know a lot of writers who deserve to be where they are and they have talent but I've seen the other side too.

Poets and writers should not be afraid to stand up at AWP and speak their mind. Are we living in the old Soviet Union? What happened to freedom of speech, to academic free thought? I thought writers were the exemplars of that. I think we saw the truth when Jorie Graham read a poem about feeding a homeless man and then efused to answer the question about her judging of contests in which some 6-8,000 writers have entered and sent in over $150,000.00 for contests in which she selected her students, etc. This is the truth of it.

Other than doing some trendy PC thing of the moment like recoginizing Latino women or Swiss Alpine Yodelers Who Have Feelings too why would AWP be afraid to take on the hard issues that face their industry at their conference? Why so namby pamby? It's the outting issue. No one wants to name names. If you tell on me what if I tell on you? It means that schools are going to start looking at teachers who cheat on behalf of their students. Maybe some action will be taken against the cheaters.

Once again -and I have said this many times- cheating on behalf of a student in a contest is just as serious as academic fraud. Writers who won a contest through cheating are then advantaged in the job market, in getting promotions, and grants, etc. It should not be allowed and the AWP by not taking a stand on this reveals a great deal about itself. Poets & Writers reveals itself by doing nothing on this. The National Poetry Series should come out with a statement about this. So should every major contest. So should the Association of American University Presses.

The system can't stand on it's own merit. It's all propped up and once some of the props go it will be a different landscape. But it means that writers have to join the forums, perhaps help boycott a contest or file a class action lawsuit. Once those things happen -and there are more Zoo-like collapses- more and more will be exposed. Perhaps then the University ofIowa will incorporate a class on ethics in their two year program for writers.
Logged
Vermeer
Newbie
*
Posts: 210



« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2005, 06:33:21 PM »

the John Casteen (University of Iowa Workshop grad) referred to by Genoways is the son of the President of the University of Virginia.

Also note that Genoways in his intro to the poems of Spanish poet Miguel Hernandez wrote:

"At a time in our country when arguments about subjects such as 'Can Poetry Matter?' take place in air-conditioned lecture halls and conference centers, it is well to remember that there are people in the world for whom poetry is an act of defiance worth risking their lives for" (xxiii)."

SO is standing up to the death of poetry which is hastened by cheating and corruption. Genoways you should be WITH us!
Logged
alan
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1314



WWW
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2005, 09:27:34 AM »

According to the stats, it was his sixth recent visit.  John the 4th, why don't you and Genoways respond?

Logged

"You especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it -- don't cheat with it.” -- Ernest Hemingway
__________________________________
Alan Cordle
alan
Administrator
*****
Posts: 1314



WWW
« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2005, 09:56:38 AM »

in this week's Chronicle:

Quote
Before we can suggest detailed short- or long-term solutions, however, we need to carefully consider how we arrived, as a culture of creative people, at a moment in which a Web site as reprehensible as Foetry would find an audience at all.


see Latest News
Logged

"You especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt, use it -- don't cheat with it.” -- Ernest Hemingway
__________________________________
Alan Cordle
missblue
Newbie
*
Posts: 96


« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2005, 10:35:58 AM »

They call Foetry reprehensible.  Yet...

If it weren't for Foetry, Ted and John would never have been making a call for changes.  And it's the same call, with mostly the same criteria, that we've been asking for here for some time.  

One exception, they don't want poets to get paid?  I seriously don't see how taking away prize money is going to help anybody except the presses.  Oh, we'll all be a nice little commune (I mean community), sharing the wealth and joy of poetry. That all sounds good and well when you are the governors and not the governed.  


Quote
Before we can suggest detailed short- or long-term solutions, however, we need to carefully consider how we arrived, as a culture of creative people, at a moment in which a Web site as reprehensible as Foetry would find an audience at all.


Ted and John don't even "consider how we arrived".  We freaking arrived here because of poets and presses cheating.  But let's not even broach that, for the cheaters had good intentions.

Hello?  They stole money!  Oh, but they did it for their students and lovers and colleagues, so that's ok?  

One last thing you've got to see.  Ted and John give us half the picture.  Foetry gives us the whole picture, in all its reprehensible ugliness.  Certainly, some unsubstantiated accusations have been made.  But Ted and John wouldn't dare call one of the "establishment" reprehensible.  It's easy to call the little librarian and his efforts reprehensible.  I find this, well, reprehensible.
Logged
missblue
Newbie
*
Posts: 96


« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2005, 10:41:44 AM »

I just had to get that off my chest!
Logged
mwb
Newbie
*
Posts: 26



WWW
« Reply #13 on: May 31, 2005, 11:01:20 AM »

Quote from: "alan"
in this week's Chronicle:

Quote
Before we can suggest detailed short- or long-term solutions, however, we need to carefully consider how we arrived, as a culture of creative people, at a moment in which a Web site as reprehensible as Foetry would find an audience at all.


see Latest News


Reporting that the emperor has no clothes only undermines people's faith in the aristocracy.  How did we get to the point that anyone pays attention to the sort of rabble who'd say such things?   :roll:
Logged

 Michael
Crimson
Newbie
*
Posts: 176


WWW
« Reply #14 on: May 31, 2005, 12:17:13 PM »

First of all, Alan, no one is confused about who brought about this change. You did.  Second, foetry will be in the dictionary in the near future.  It is not just an american phenomenon.  It is worldwide, wherever communities of poets exist.  You cleverly coined the phenomenon, and gave us a new word.  If these "aristocrats" get together and fix this, whatever they pretend to be their motivations, they will do it because the name sticks. And burns.  Wherever they are, they will hear the word and know it applies to them.  The scarlet letter F.
Logged

enata Dumitrascu
Pages: [1] 2 3
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.2 | SMF © 2006-2007, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!