We're pleased to welcome Stephanie Heit to our At Home with Literati Series in support of Psych Murders. She will be joined by guest readers Vidhu Aggarwal and Meg Day. ASL interpretation and closed captioning will be available.
Click here to join the webinar event on 9/6. No pre-registration required!
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Stephanie Heit’s hybrid memoir poem blasts the page electric and documents her experience of shock treatment. Using a powerful mélange of experimental forms, she traces her queer mad bodymind through breathlessness, damage, refusal, and memory loss as it shifts in and out of locked psychiatric wards and extreme bipolar states. Heit survives to give readers access to this somatic, visceral rendering of a bipolar life complete with sardonic humor, while showing us the dire need for new paradigms of mental health care outside closets, attics, prisons, and wards. Psych Murders adds a vital layer of lived experience of electroshocks and suicidal ideation to the growing body of literature of madness and mental health difference.
Stephanie Heit is a queer disabled poet, dancer, teacher, and codirector of Turtle Disco, a somatic writing space on Anishinaabe land in Ypsilanti, Michigan. She is a psych system/shock survivor, bipolar, a Zoeglossia Fellow, and a member of Olimpias, a disability performance collective. Her poetry collections are the hybrid memoir poem PSYCH MURDERS (Wayne State University Press 2022) and The Color She Gave Gravity (OS 2017), which explores the seams of language, movement, and mental health difference. Website stephanie-heit.com.
Vidhu Aggarwal’s poetry and multimedia practices engage with world-building, video, and graphic media. Their poetry book, The Trouble with Humpadori (2016), imagines a cosmic mythological space for marginalized transnational subjects. Avatara, a chapbook from Portable @Yo-Yo Labs Press, is situated in a post-apocalyptic gaming world where A.I.s play at being gods. They have published in the Poetry, Boston Review, Black Warrior Review, Aster(ix) Journal, and Leonardo, among other journals. In their latest poetry book Daughter Isotope (OS 2021), Aggarwal (she/they) engages in a “cloud poetics,” as a way of thinking about personal, collective, and digital archives as a collaborative process with comic artists, dancers, and video artists. Visit the website at daughterisotope.com.
Meg Day is a Deaf, genderqueer poet and the author of Last Psalm at Sea Level (Barrow Street Press, 2014). Day is Assistant Professor of English & Creative Writing in the MFA Program at North Carolina State University.