Poetry and the Senses Fellowship Information


what did i know about waters rushing back
what did i know about drowning
or being drowned
-–Lucille Clifton, the lost baby poem

UC Berkeley’s Arts Research Center (ARC) is spending two years exploring Poetry and the Senses, thanks to a generous grant from Engaging the Senses Foundation. The program is grounded in the relevance and urgency of lyrical making and storytelling in times of political crisis, and the value of engaging the senses as an act of care, mindfulness, and resistance. We support poetry in its broadest definition; our fellows have had connections in English and Comparative Literature; Theater, Dance and Performance Studies; Art Practice; Berkeley Center for New Media; Global Urban Humanities; Native American Studies; Spanish & Portuguese; Music; and Near Eastern Studies departments at UC Berkeley. Amplifying under-represented voices is part of ARC’s bigger mission.

Apply here!

ARC Fellows Program:

Modeled on the pre-existing ARC Fellows Program, the core of the grant funds horizontal working groups that bring together UC Berkeley faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, and local community poets. Each group will convene over a semester to share creative work, research, discussion, and critique, organized around a wide-ranging theme. Students are able to earn 1 credit for participation if desired.

The current application is now open for the spring fellowship, January – May 2021. Eight fellows will be chosen, two in each category of faculty, grad, undergrad, and community poet. Each fellow will receive a $3,000 stipend for the semester.

Fellows will:
– Meet twice a month with the fellows working group to share work
– Participate in any projects the group decides on collectively
– Write 500 word blog post to be published on the ARC Blog
– Participate in one reading (individual, or with the larger group, online)
– Meet with Poetry and the Senses visiting writers
– Have their work showcased in a chapbook

For spring 2021, we will continue with our theme of emerge/ncy. What kinds of poetic modes of address might be recruited in times of global catastrophe? How does poetry help us think through and within crisis? “Emergency” implies urgency, sudden harm, life-threatening violence, and extreme circumstances, but embedded within it is the word “emergence;” suggesting rebirth and new beginnings. How can we understand moments of emergency as catalysts for renewal, as ruptures that signal massive—if painful—change?

Application FAQs can be found here. If you are having issues accessing the form, please try in the Google Chrome app. Please email Laurie Macfee at macfee@berkeley.edu and she will send you an emailed link directly.

Please sign-up for the ARC Newsletter for more information about our upcoming programs.

Click to apply here!