The University of Iowa

CAPS to host public lecture and reading this week

October 7th, 2013

The Center for Asian and Pacific Studies is hosting two events this week, both free and open to the public. Please join us for the following:

“Phonotaxis: Singing the Songs of Interlanguage or 吟歌丽诗 (A Manifesto of Sorts)”
Thursday, October 10, 2013, from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. in 302 Schaeffer Hall

Jonathan Stalling, associate professor at the University of Oklahoma, argues for liberating languages from the constraints of their historical scripts so that poets can write out the prosodies of interlanguages. His opera “Yingelishi” was performed in China in 2010 and features an English libretto written entirely in Chinese characters. In this talk, Stalling articulates a larger vision for this work and a broader interlanguage poetics grounded in what he calls “Phonotaxis,” or poetry built to house voices that cross through interlinguistic constraints. The talk will be accompanied by a series of four new video poems featuring his text-to-speech avatars reading a single English poem inscribed in Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, and Korean scripts. He argues that poetry of this kind can modify the way we hear language itself.

Chinese in three voices
"Chinese in Three Voices” (A reading in English and Chinese)
Friday October 11, 2013, from 5:00 to 6:15 p.m. in the Shambaugh House, 430 N. Clinton St.

About the readers:

  • A Lai is a Chinese novelist of Tibetan minority, author of Red Poppies and other novels in Chinese, and editor for the Science Fiction World journal.
  • Jonathan Stalling is a poet and professor of English at the University of Oklahoma who edits Chinese Literature Today.
  • Wang Jiaxin writes, edits, and translates widely in the landscape of contemporary world poetry. A poetry volume in English is forthcoming.

These events are sponsored by the UI Center for Asian and Pacific Studies, the Confucius Institute, the International Writing Program, the Division of World Language, Literatures & Culture, and International Programs. See the event poster

For more information, contact Dongwang Liu at or 319-335-1305.