Words Beyond Borders: Writing Radical Love

Vision Lab in residence at Center for the Study of World Religions, Harvard Divinity School

Cambridge, MA, 2018

Devi Lockwood on her mission to travel by bike around the world collecting 1,001 stories about climate change and her (related?) new podcast on romantic heartbreak. Kieren Kresevic Salazar on subaltern writing practices and his work co-writing a memoir with his friend Amer who is a Sudanese migrant living in a refugee camp in Kenya. Nadia Colburn on the relation between writing, self-care, and embodiment practices, including an experiential exercise in meditation/Kundalini yoga. Matthew Battles on his work creating new species of moths, writing collaborations with computers, and Harvard meta-Lab experiments in new technology and art. Kythe Heller on the radical imaginaries of mystics, heretics, and poets, along with exercises on  unwriting/unthinking.

Kindly hosted by the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard Divinity School, 42 Francis Ave. Cambridge.

Matthew Battles is the Director of Scholarly Initiatives at metaLAB at Harvard, where he develops design interventions, media provocations, and technology projects in collaboration with a team of architects, web designers, scholars and artists. Matthew has written about the cultural dimensions of science and technology for such venues as The American Scholar, The Atlantic, The Boston Globe, Harper’s Magazine, and The New York Times. His book Library: an Unquiet History (W. W. Norton) is available in eight languages worldwide and has been in print since 2003, and he is coauthor, with Jeffrey Schnapp, of The Library Beyond the Book (Harvard 2014). His recent books include Palimpsest (Norton 2015) and Tree (Bloomsbury 2017). He is currently working on a book about memory as a property of the world.

Devi Lockwood (Harvard College ‘14) is a poet / touring cyclist / storyteller traveling the world (often by bicycle) to record 1,001 stories on water & climate change. Devi's journey began with the September 21, 2014 People's Climate March in NYC. To date she has recorded over 750 stories (audio) in the USA, Fiji, Tuvalu, New Zealand, Australia, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Qatar, Morocco, the U.K., Canada, China, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. She is actively seeking artistic collaborations in dance / sound / performance / new media / environmental education where these sound recordings can be put to good use. Devi is working to create a map on a website where you can click on a point and listen to a water / climate story from that place, and will launch a podcast in 2018. Her writing has been published in The New York Times, The Guardian, Slate, Bicycling Magazine, Storyscape, BOAAT, Gulf Coast, and elsewhere. (Harvard ‘14, B.A. in Folklore & Mythology with a Language Citation in Arabic).

Nadia Colburn's poetry and prose have been widely published in such places as The New Yorker, American Poetry Review, LA Review of Books, Spirituality and Health, Harvard Review, Yale Review, Slate, The Boston Globe magazine and many other places. She holds a PhD in English from Columbia, a BA from Harvard, is a certified kundalini yoga instructor and a serious student of Thich Nhat Hanh. She is the principal at Align Your Light, which offers life coaching and mindful writing coaching and classes and a is founding editor at Anchor, a spirituality and social justice.

Kythe Heller: Poet, writer, performer & filmmaker; Doctoral student at Harvard Divinity School with a second field in Arts practice through Visual and Environmental Studies/Critical Media Practice. Convenor of Vision Lab. In what ways can our writing and art practices become sites of evolution, sites of resistance, parts of an array of realizing new spiritual, social and ecological relationships by considering how to use language and art to radically change our ways of being in the world? Her poetry and essays have been published widely, most recently in Tricycle, The American Poetry Review, and the Cambridge University Press volume White Light. She is author of the poetry collection Immolation and a recipient of writing and arts grants and fellowships from the Mellon Foundation, Harvard University, The MacDowell Colony, Vermont Studio Center, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and the Laurels Foundation/PSU. Recent film and multimedia work has been presented at the Harvard Film Studies Center, SEEDS Festival/ Earthdance, Sonoma State University, WAXworks (NYC), BAX (NYC), Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and in various collaborations and street performances in NYC and elsewhere. She has taught poetry, religion, literature, creative writing, arts and media courses at Harvard University, Bard College, Sarah Lawrence College, Bard Prison Initiative, and Hofstra University.

Kieren Kresevic graduated from Harvard studying Comparative Literature, with a focus on refugee testimony and displacement narratives. He was the Editor in Chief of the Harvard Human Rights Review and the Managing Editor of the Harvard College Law Review. His research interests include East-African migration and refugee flows, and the detention of asylum seekers and refugees in Australia and the Pacific Islands. Kieren is a writer, currently collaborating on the autobiography of a Sudanese refugee displaced from the ongoing genocide in Darfur. He currently leads a refugee writers collective in Indonesia, collaborating with refugees.