Tag Archives: 2013

AWP 2013 Boston

Friends, colleagues, and future PSP-ers alike, many of us are getting ready for the Association of Writers & Writing Programs’ annual conference, commonly referred to as AWP. This year we’ll be meeting in Boston and the Prague Summer Program is proud to announce we have to events for you to look forward to in addition to our presence in the Bookfair.

“Stalking the Golem: The Prague Summer Program’s 20th Anniversay” will be a celebration of the PSP’s 20th anniversary. Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Prague Summer Program, faculty and former students discuss the relation of the study-abroad experience to the pedagogy of creative writing. Each panelist–Jaimy Gordon, T. Geronimo Johnson, Melinda Moustakis, and Robert Eversz–will speak anecdotally about what the PSP means to him or her, and broadly about the value of the study-abroad experience.The panel discusses the evolution of the structure of the PSP, as well as the institutional interface, over time, between American institutions and the foreign entities with whom they partner. We explore how such programs as the PSP serve as points of confluence for American and host literary cultures. This is set to take place at 10:30 on Friday in Room 308, Level 3.

“Yoga and the Life of the Writer” is about Yoga and the writer’s often sedentary life; Krista Katrovas will be joined by Melissa Pritchard, Pam Uschuk, Suzanne Roberts, and Andrea England who will give brief testimonials regarding Yoga practices and discuss how meditation as well as physical aspects of Yoga enhance writing/reading lives. Her panel will also touch on meditation and spirituality.  The session concludes with demonstrations of chanting and chair Yoga, the latter offering practical, safe techniques, for counteracting the effects of sitting still for long periods. The audience is encouraged to participate. Career status is irrelevant to this panel, which will consist of writers/Yoginis at different stages of their careers. This is set to take place at 10:30 on Friday in Room 313, Level 3.

Finally, please find us at the bookfair! We look forward to seeing your faces in Boston!

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Welcome!

Welcome to the Prague Summer Program blog. 2013 is our twentieth anniversary, and we will herein celebrate the incredible talent that has passed through the program since Prague was first called “the Left Bank of the 90s.” Nearly 2000 students and faculty have composed the PSP, and their publications over the past two decades would fill a bookstore! This space will attempt to reflect at least a small portion of the luminous and varied talents of the PSP family. We will publish anecdotes and testimonials, as well as poems, stories, and personal essays.

I offer up (in the next post), in the spirit of inauguration, an essay I wrote several years ago, one in which I meditate, most of the time with my tongue in my cheek, on issues of quality, quality control. It’s titled “Czech, Italian, Mexican Cuisine,” and is about my relation to Czech culture and the Prague Summer Program. The tone seems a bit harsh to me now, though I stand by it. It’s from a time when my ex-wife was the PSP in-country coordinator, and I must say that my mood regarding things Czech has brightened considerably since she disengaged her considerable talents from the program!

The Prague Summer Program has existed for most of the years since the Velvet Revolution, and it has changed in character even as Prague has changed, as the relationships between Czechs and Americans, Czechs and the world, have changed. Prague has transformed from being the capital of a tiny country in which a tiny though incredibly beautiful and literarily replete language is spoken, into a truly international city that has shed most vestiges of a provinciality imposed by more than forty years of totalitarian rule. An entire generation of Czechs for whom the Velvet Revolution is history are now the driving cultural force of Prague, and many perceive themselves as European primarily, and Czech secondarily.

Let this space resonate with the passions and, yes, the ambivalences, we feel about that incredibly beautiful city and its sometimes dour, often droll, always ironic, beautiful people.

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