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Kate and Medaya talk with poet, essayist, and critic Jackie Wang about her new collection of verse, The Sunflower Cast a Spell To Save Us From The Void. As an assistant professor of Culture and Media Studies at The New School, Wang also works on race, surveillance technology, and the political economy of prisons and police. In her poetry, she uses dreams to get at very concrete historical and social issues — along with the apocalypse, survival, intimacy, speech, silence, and, of course, sunflowers. Wang discusses the relationship between her poetry and academic work, as well as her exploration of dreams, psychoanalysis, and the work of the imagination — that is, “the work of creating openings where there were previously none.”
Also, Jo Ann Beard, author of Festival Days, returns to recommend two collections of stories, Daniel Orozco’s cOrientation and Amy Hempel’s Sing to It.