News Release| Discourses on Metadiscourses; Cal State L.A.

February 3, 2011

Discourses on Metadiscourses’ at Cal State L.A.explores literary philosophies, ideas through the minds of three celebrated professors

Los Angeles, CA — Cal State L.A.’s roundtable, “Discourses on Metadiscourses,” on Thursday, Feb. 17, at 6:30 p.m. will provide insights into the literary thoughts, writing processes, and philosophies of three renowned professors: Novelist Mark Axelrod, Philosopher Anthony J. Cascardi, and Poet Timothy Steele.

 Sponsored by CSULA’s Center for Contemporary Poetry and Poetics, and taking place in the Los Angeles Room (C-308) of CSULA’s University-Student Union, the roundtable will offer opportunities for the audience to engage the panel. 

 “I am very excited at the prospect of discussing literature and philosophy with two such distinguished figures. Their insights can illuminate poetry and writing from angles and in manners different from those we poets tend to adopt,” said Steele, an award-winning poet who teaches English and is director of the Center for Contemporary Poetry and Poetics at CSULA.

Steele’s earlier poems are collected in Sapphics and Uncertainties: Poems 1970-1986 and The Color Wheel. He has published two volumes of literary criticism: Missing Measures: Modern Poetry and the Revolt against Meter, and All the Fun’s in How You Say a Thing: An Explanation of Meter and Versification. His most recent book of poems is Toward the Winter Solstice.

“After a century in which the arts and the humanities tried to mimic science—and the experimental methods, innovative energy, and specialized technical vocabulary of science—the panel will also discuss ways in which, in this new century, the arts and humanities might recover, on their own terms, their historically central role in our cultural life,” explained Steele.

Axelrod, an honored novelist, screenwriter and critic, is director of the John Fowles Center for Creative Writing at Chapman University. During the roundtable, he will focus, in part, on the poetics of 21st-century prose fiction and how, to a great extent, it pays a “literary obeisance to those great poetic progenitors, such as Cervantes, Sterne, and Diderot.” 

Axelrod has published four novels, Capital Castles, Cloud Castles, Cardboard Castles, and Bombay California; and has recently completed a novel in three books titled The Posthumous Memoirs of Blase Kubash and a book on adaptation titled I Read It at the Movies. He has also written several renowned collections of short stories, two books on screenwriting, and numerous journals in the United States and Europe. 

Cascardi is a professor of comparative literature, rhetoric, and Spanish as well as director of the Townsend Center for the Humanities at the University of California, Berkley. Among many other publications, he is the author of Consequences of Enlightenment, the Cambridge Companion to Cervantes, and more recently, the editor of Poiesis and Modernity in Early Modern Spain and Europe.

Cascardi’s research interests include the relation between literature and philosophy, aesthetic theory, the novel, and early modern Europe. He is general editor of Penn State Studies in Literature and Philosophy. His recent publications include Consequences of Enlightenment and The Cambridge Companion to Cervantes.

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