Bloomfield, MI – Barrett Watten is known as a “language-centered” poet and critic of modern and contemporary cultures. A collected poems, Frame: 1971–1990, appeared from Sun & Moon in 1997; Bad History, a nonnarrative prose poem “including history,” was published by Atelos in 1998; and Progress/ Under Erasure, a combined edition of two long poems, came out from Green Integer in 2004. He collaborated on two multi¬authored experimental works: Leningrad: American Writers in the Soviet Union (Mercury House, 1992) and The Grand Piano: An Experiment in Collective Autobiography, San Francisco, 1975–80, which began serial publication in November 2006 and will be completed in fall 2010. He edited the language-centered magazine This in the 1970s and co-edited Poetics Journal with Lyn Hejinian in the 1980s. His work has been translated into numerous languages, and he has read his poetry throughout the United States and Europe. His book-length series Plasma/Parallèles/“X” appeared in French translation by Martin Richet from Le Quartanier (Montreal) in 2007.
His most recent critical study The Constructivist Moment: From Material Text to Cultural Poetics (Wes¬leyan University Press, 2003), received the René Wellek Prize in 2004; Total Syntax was published by Southern Illinois University Press in 1985. With Carrie No¬land, he co-edited Diasporic Avant-Gardes: Experimental Poetics and Cultural Displacement (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009). Wesleyan University Press will publish a combined print/digital Guide to Poetics Journal and Poetics Journal Digital Archive in 2011. He was a Senior Fulbright Scholar at Universität Tübingen, Germany, in 2005, and is currently Professor of English at Wayne State University, Detroit