A conversation of poems: The didactic will be the discussion

The Arts House
Friday, 21 April 2017

the didactic will be the discussion:  a conversation of poems

If to converse is to be with, to be turning around with, whilst never necessarily  agreeing, this is a being-with that doesn’t subsume, that never reduces the singularity  of the ones in relation. For, as Jean-Luc Nancy reminds us in his foreword to Philippe  Beck’s Poésies didactiques, « one needs separation, sending, address, and this in  itself defines both poetry and teaching: the poem teaches ». Thus, it is no  coincidence that the three in conversation — Beck, Adam Staley Groves, Lim Lee  Ching — are teachers.

Which is not to say that they will prescribe, be prescriptive — far from it.

For, space is the beginning poem.

And the very space that is being cultivated, preserved, cared for, is that of the  relation between the poem and the reader, between the readers reading the poems  — even when the poems are written by the ones reading them — and the ones  hearing the poems, listening to the conversation.

Between the poems — between poetry — and you.

For, « what must be said/ is not already spoken/ in the individual’s brain, / nor in the  Collective, / but it is said because / of the conversation / which creates necessity / all  around brains ».

Poets — Readers — Speakers

Philippe Beck is a contemporary French poet, writer, and philosopher. He is  Professor of Poetry at The European Graduate School, and of Philosophy at  l’Université de Nantes. Interested in the nature of the poetic experience, for Beck, the  poetic today lies not only between scientific experience and common sense  experience but allows for their communicability — and his work traverses poetry,  poétologie, prose, and philosophy. He has published sixteen books of poetry and  was awarded the Grand Prix de Poésie from the French Academy in 2015 in  recognition of his poetic œuvre.

Lim Lee Ching teaches literature and interdisciplinary subjects at SIM University,  Singapore. He is the author of The Works of Tomas Tranströmer: The Universality of  Poetry (Cambria, 2017), and has edited Peter van de Kamp's 2010 collection of  poetry, Scratch & Sniff. Ching's poems have been published in One Imperative, as  well as been collected alongside Geraldine Song's works, To Thee Do We Cry, Poor Banished Children (2013), and Semoga Bahagia (2015). Ching is the founding editor of The Singapore Review of Books.

Adam Staley Groves is the author of two complete volumes of poetry, Filial Arcade and Poetry Vocare. An individually published poem “Etui” was recently  adopted to a contemporary classical music composition through Gaudeamus, in The  Netherlands.   


Jeremy Fernando is the Jean Baudrillard Fellow at the European Graduate School,  where he is also a Reader in Contemporary Literature & Thought. He has written  eighteen books; and has been translated into French, Japanese, Italian, Spanish, and Serbian. He is the general editor of the thematic magazine One Imperative; and is a Fellow of Tembusu College at the National University of Singapore.

To register, please click here.

* * *

This event is brought to you by Voilah ! 2017 French Festival and Delere Press, in  conjunction with The European Graduate School, and is supported by The Arts House