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It's funny to see beat poetry done in such a formal setting. I feel like it is against the spirit of Beat Poetry to perform in such an environment. The lack of crowd involvement takes away from the performance and the speakers seems to be holding back a bit in the beginning. It is definitely an unusual thing to watch.
This definitely reminds me of the power and sorrow of Azaldua's writing. Andrew, I actually disagree with you on the lack of authenticity in the poem. The crowd was very engaged, and I think I heard murmurings of approval in the audience. The performer was completely invested in the delivery of her poem, and the emotion of her words brought tears to my eyes. I don't think she held back anything.
It reminds me of Gloria Anzaldua's "La conciencia de la mestiza" and Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari's "What is a Minor Literature?"Why, Liz, why? Can you say more?Andrew and MM, you might look at this article in the Washington City Paper about the sale of Politics and Prose. What might be of particular interest are some of the snarky comments that Anderson makes later in the article about literature as spectacle and the way that Bussboys and Poets has jumped on that bandwagon. And just in case anyone needs something else to read, you might consider This Bridge Called My Back, which was edited by one Gloria Anzaldua.