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NMPoetics faculty
2010 - 2017 



Hoa Nguyen | Will Alexander | Danielle Vogel | Walter K. Lew | Jennifer Denetdale | Lucy Lippard | Maria Damon | Mei-mei Berssenbrugge | Layli Long Soldier | Carmen Gimenez-Smith | Evan Lavendar Smith | Miriam Sagan | Stanley Crawford | Leonard Schwartz | Suzanne Vilmain | Orlando White | Craig Dworkin | Michael Golston | Kyle Schlessinger | Melody Sumner Carnahan | Michael Sumner | Charles Alexander | Arthur Sze | Jeanne Liotta | Aldon Nielson | Matthew Hofer | JB Bryan



faculty bios
2018








Latasha N. Nevada Diggs
A writer, vocalist, and sound artist, LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs is the author of TwERK (Belladonna, 2013), a collection of poems, songs, and myths, and the cofounder and coeditor of Coon Bidness and SO4. Her work has appeared in many publications, including Rattapallax, Nocturnes, Spoken Word Revolution Redux, Ploughshares, Mandorla, P.M.S., jubilat, Everything But the Burden, ART21 Magazine, Palabra, and Fence. Her interdisciplinary work has been featured at MoMA, the Walker Art Center, Modern Museum of Fort Worth Texas, and the 2015 Venice Biennale. As an independent curator, artistic director, and producer, LaTasha has produced literary/musical events for Lincoln Center Out of Doors, BAMCafé, Black Rock Coalition, David Rubenstein Atrium, and El Museo del Barrio. A native of Harlem, Diggs is the recipient of numerous awards, including the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, the Laundromat Project, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Japan–United States Friendship Commission, and Creative Capital.


Will Alexander
Will Alexander works in multiple genres. In addition to being a poet, he is also a novelist, essayist, aphorist, playwright, philosopher, visual artist, and pianist. His influences range from poetic practitioners, such as Aimé Césaire, Bob Kaufman, Andre Breton, Antonin Artaud, and Philip Lamantia, to the encompassing paradigm of Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga, and the Egyptian worldview as understood by Cheikh Anta Diop and R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz. The latter is central to Alexander’s expanding inner range, which has allowed him access to levels of mind beyond the three-dimensional as boundary. He thereby explores the full dimensionality of each word. For him, each word has access to not only the median level of three-dimensional experience, but also partakes of experience on both the supra and subconscious planes. His praxis of language is not unlike the Mayan numerical world, where each letter of the alphabet spontaneously engages in non-limit. Thus, all fields of experience are open for exploration: art, physics, botany, history, astronomy, architecture, and poetics. Alexander’s books include Asia and Haiti, The Sri Lankan Loxodrome, Compression and Purity, Sunrise In Armageddon, Diary As Sin, Inside the Earthquake Palace, Towards The Primeval Lightning Field, and Mirach Speaks To His Grammatical Transparents. He lives in The City of Angels.


Dorothy Wang
Dorothy J. Wang is a Professor in the American Studies Program at Williams College. When will American poetry and poetics stop viewing poetry by racialized persons as a secondary subject within the field? Dorothy J. Wang makes an impassioned case that now is the time. Thinking Its Presence calls for a radical rethinking of how American poetry is being read today, offering its own reading as a roadmap. While focusing on the work of five contemporary Asian American poets—Li-Young Lee, Marilyn Chin, John Yau, Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, and Pamela Lu—the book contends that aesthetic forms are inseparable from social, political, and historical contexts in the writing and reception of all poetry. Wang questions the tendency of critics and academics alike to occlude the role of race in their discussions of the American poetic tradition and casts a harsh light on the double standard they apply in reading poems by poets who are racial minorities. This is the first sustained study of the formal properties in Asian American poetry across a range of aesthetic styles, from traditional lyric to avant-garde. Wang argues with conviction that critics should read minority poetry with the same attention to language and form that they bring to their analyses of writing by white poets.

Mei-mei Berssenbrugge (reader)
Mei-mei Berssenbrugge was born in Beijing and grew up in Massachusetts. She is the author of twelve books of poetry, most recently I Love Artists: New and Selected Poems and A Lit Cloud, a collaboration with artist Kiki Smith. She lives in New York City and northern New Mexico. Mei-mei Berssenbrugge’s Hello, the Roses opens up poetic form into long, shimmering lines shaped by the beauty and phenomenal fullness of the natural environment. She begins by exploring an array of unities perceived between myth and landscape, fashion and culture, experience and forgetting, boys and ravens. The poems of the middle section shift into an invisible world where plants, animals, and the self communicate and coexist through a process of mutual healing and imagination.…

Jennifer Denetdale
As the first-ever Diné/Navajo to earn a Ph.D. in history, Dr. Jennifer Nez Denetdale is a strong advocate for Native peoples and strives to foster academic excellence in the next generation of students interested in Indigenous Studies. Denetdale is an Associate Professor of American Studies at the University of New Mexico and teaches courses in Critical Indigenous Studies, Indigenous gender and sexuality, Indigenous feminisms and gender, and Navajo Studies. Her book, Reclaiming Diné History: The Legacies of Navajo Chief Manuelito and Juanita, was published by the University of Arizona Press in 2007 and has received positive reviews. Her book for young adults, The Long Walk: The Forced Exile of the Navajo, was published by Chelsea House in 2007. Professor Denetdale is the author of numerous essays, articles, and book chapters. She has expertise as a consultant for Native museum exhibits and was an expert witness on behalf of the Navajo Nation. She is the director of UNM's Institute for American Indian Research (IfAIR) and the chair of the Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission. As a commissioner on the Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission, she has advocated for Navajo women and the LGBTQI community. She has been recognized for her scholarship and service to her nation and community with several awards, including the Rainbow Naatsiilid True Colors for her support and advocacy on behalf of the Navajo LGBTQI and the UNM Faculty of Color Award for her teaching, research and service in the academy. In 2013, she was awarded the UNM Sarah Brown Belle award for service to her community.