Professor Anthony Reed Discusses 'Phonographic Poetry' at Convening Yale
The Yale School of Management’s Convening Yale speaker series began its 2012-2013 lineup on September 26 with a talk by Anthony Reed, assistant professor of African American studies and English. Convening Yale is a monthly series of afternoon seminars that brings scholars from across the University to share their research with the SOM community.
In his talk at Yale SOM, titled “Phonographic Poetry: Race, Records, and the Archive,” Reed considered the consequences that recording technology has had on African American poetry since the 1960s. One such consequence has been the development of phonographic poetry: poetry recited with musical accompaniment and distributed through a recording. While some scholars believe that the spoken and musical components of these recordings are distinct elements with no significant bearing on each other, Reed said, he believes they combine to produce a new kind of poetry. “Phonographic poetry is poetry without a single author,” he said.
Reed discussed his recent research and played snippets of recordings from rapper Inspectah Deck of the Wu Tang Clan and jazz pianist Cecil Taylor to illustrate points about the ways the act of recording influences the written word.
Upcoming speakers in the Convening Yale series include Yale School of Architecture Dean Robert Stern, journalists Chuck Todd and Margaret Warner, Egyptologist John Darnell, Yale Law School Dean Robert Post, and Phyllis Granoff, the Lex Hixon Professor of World Religions.