Poetry at Beinecke Library

Poet Dan Beachy-Quick Reading

Posted in Announcements, Poetry at Yale, Readings at Beinecke, Readings at Yale by beineckepoetry on October 19, 2011

Dan Beachy Quick, Poetry Reading
Thursday, November 3rd, 4:00 pm
Beinecke Library, 121 Wall Street
Yale Collection of American Literature Reading Series
Contact: nancy.kuhl@yale.edu

Dan Beachy-Quick is the author of poetry collections including North True South Bright (2003), Mulberry (2006), Los Angeles Times Book Award finalist for poetry, This Nest, Swift Passerine (2009), and Circle’s Apprentice (2011). He is the author of A Whaler’s Dictionary (2008), a response to Herman Melville’s Moby Dick. Beachy-Quick’s work has been supported by the Lannan Foundation. He has taught at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Colorado State University.

For more information and examples of Dan Beachy-Quick’s work:



Posted in Announcements, Beinecke Collections by beineckepoetry on October 12, 2011

The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University has acquired Eugene O’Neill’s “lost” one-act play, “Exorcism” (1919).  The play, along with a facsimile of the typescript, will be published in a cloth edition by Yale University Press in February 2012, featuring an introduction by the noted American playwright Edward Albee.  The New Yorker has acquired first serial rights and will publish the play in its entirety, with an introduction by theater critic John Lahr, in the magazine’s Fall Books issue, October 17, 2011 (on newsstands October 10). A short video of the actor Tommy Schrider reading from “Exorcism” will be featured on The New Yorker’s website and iPad application: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/books/2011/10/eugene-oneill-exorcism-reading.html .

“Exorcism,” set in 1912, is based on O’Neill’s suicide attempt from an overdose of veronal in a squalid, Manhattan rooming house. The play premiered at the Provincetown Playhouse in New York City on March 26, 1920. Following a few performances, however, O’Neill chose, abruptly, to cancel the production and to retract and destroy all known copies of the script. O’Neill biographers have speculated that the play, produced as O’Neill’s father was dying, was perhaps too revealing of O’Neill’s own demons and potentially distressing for his parents.

Despite long-held presumptions that the play was irrevocably lost, O’Neill’s second wife, Agnes Boulton, apparently retained a copy of the play, which she gave as a Christmas gift to the writer Philip Yordan after her divorce from O’Neill. Yordan is perhaps best known for his O’Neill-inspired play, and later film, Anna Lucasta, starring an all-black cast. The typescript, with edits and emendations in O’Neill’s own hand, was discovered by a researcher working in Yordan’s papers, together with the original envelope; the label is inscribed, “Something you said you’d like to have / Agnes & Mac” (Morris “Mac” Kaufman was Boulton’s third husband).

O’Neill, a four-time Pulitzer Prize winner and the only American playwright to receive the Nobel Prize for literature (1936), returned to many of the issues that surface in “Exorcism” in his heavily autobiographical play Long Day’s Journey into Night, published posthumously in 1956 and considered to be his masterpiece. The discovery of “Exorcism,” after ninety years, adds significantly to O’Neill’s biography, intimating the overwhelming role that suicide would take in his personal life along with the issue’s influence and impact on his work. The play also marks a pivotal moment in O’Neill’s prolific career, providing further insight into the later works for which he is now revered.

The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library is the principal repository for the Eugene O’Neill Papers. A detailed description of the papers is available online: Eugene O’Neill Papers Finding Aid (YCAL MSS 123). Some materials from the collection can be viewed online: Eugene O’Neill Papers Image Guide. Related materials and collections may be located using the Beiencke Library’s various research tools: Guide to Research Tools.

For inquiries about the play, or the Eugene O’Neill Papers, please contact Louise Bernard (louise.bernard@yale.edu<mailto:louise.bernard@yale.edu>), Curator of the Yale Collection of American Literature for Prose and Drama, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.

For inquiries about the play’s publication in book form this February, please contact Brenda King (brenda.king@yale.edu<https://connect.yale.edu/owa/redir.aspx?C=73c3409735984d659ba72031b6fc15e7&URL=mailto%3abrenda.king%40yale.edu>), Publicity Director, Yale University Press.

Image: Photograph of Eugene O’Neill, inscribed to his son [1927].

A Manifesto of Queer Modernism

Posted in Announcements, Beinecke Collections by beineckepoetry on October 5, 2011

A Manifesto of Queer Modernism
a lecture by Tirza T. Latimer, California College of the Arts
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
The Loria Center
190 York Street, Room 351

Queer friendship circles, like the ones that formed around Gertrude Stein in the early twentieth century, played a pivotal role in the incubation of modernism and its propagation on American terrain. Stein’s network consisted largely of art world figures who shared sexual as well as aesthetic affinities. They honed practices (such as portraiture) and initiated trends (such as neo-romanticism), that celebrated their sentimental and artistic connections. They exchanged all manner of tributes: photographs, paintings, collages, word portraits, and musical compositions. They produced collective works and undertook interdisciplinary efforts–neither typically referenced in histories of modernism. For instance, the 1934 opera Four Saints in Three Acts–composed by Virgil Thomson to Stein’s libretto, choreographed by Frederick Ashton, and performed by a Harlem chorus resplendent in Florine Stettheimer’s costumes–has not been widely touted as an important modernist event. Yet, its makers meant, Tirza T. Latimer argues, to train a spotlight on alternate forms of modernist practice.

Image: Photograph of the stage set for Four Saints in Three Acts, from the Florine Stettheimer Papers