Affect & Audience in the Digital Age

Affect & Audience in the Digital Age is a symposium and performance event exploring the aesthetics of digital meditation in contemporary poetry. While poets have long been expected to connect with readers through carefully constructed emotional appeals, much poetic work is now written through impersonal digital methodologies such as crowd sourcing and data mining. Yet digitally mediated poetry can still have a particular affective density: even appropriated text from the Internet can convey the “powerful feelings” that Wordsworth described as the ideal for poetry.

So, given the new realities of digital composition and distribution, how has poetry changed? Can digital mediation impact the direction in which knowledge and expertise flow? Where is creativity located now?

Join us on Friday, Oct. 18, at 6:00 pm at the Henry Art Gallery Auditorium as invited poets, scholars and interdisciplinary artists, present new forms of poetry emerging in the digital age. This event is free and features presentations by:

Kate Durbin, author of The Ravenous Audience, and founder of the journal Gaga Stigmata and the tumblr Women as Objects.

Craig Dworkin, author of No Medium and Reading the Illegible, and co-editor with Kenneth Goldsmith of Against Expression: An Anthology of Conceptual Writing.

Adam Frank, scholar of media and affect, and founder of Radio Free Stein, a project rendering the writings of Gertrude Stein into musical form.

Ray Hsu, author of Anthropy and Cold Sleep Permanent Afternoon, and co-founder of Art Song Lab, an interdisciplinary platform for fusions across poetry, music, and performance.

Rachel Zolf, author of Human Resources and Neighbor Procedure, and founder of The Tolerance Project, a collaborative MFA produced from poetic DNA donated by eighty writers, artists, and thinkers.

Morning and afternoon s symposium sessions take place on Oct. 18 from 9:00am – 4:30pm and include a roundtable discussion at the Simpson Center for the Humanities and an exhibition at the University of Washington Book Arts Collection. Those interested in attending the daytime sessions, which include lunch, are asked to register by Thursday, Oct. 10. 

Affect & Audience in the Digital Age is organized by Brian Reed (English), Sarah Dowling (Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences, UW Bothell), Gregory Laynor (English), and Amaranth Borsuk (Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences, UW Bothell). For more information, see

Be Boundless for Washington | For the World