Scott Korb

News

04 November 2016

"Baldwin in the Obama Years"

Today at Guernica I have a new essay about teaching James BaldwinThe Fire Next Time throughout Obamas presidency. Here is a little of what I conclude:

It only became clear to me as I taught the book over the past few years ... following the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, as we discussed the protests in Ferguson and the renewed vigor and revolutionary moment captured by Black Lives Matter, that Obama is not the key figure in this country. I had been wrong: the American future is precisely not as bright or as dark as his. And my students, who have paid attention to a chokehold on Staten Island and a shooting in greater St. Louis, and who remembered a black teenager killed in Sanford, Florida, and who are reckoning with recent killings in Tulsa and Charlotte and Los Angeles, now know what Baldwin was talking about. Theyve seen the private fears of white Americans projected onto American blacks. We see it every day. This is our ongoing crisis; there is serious evil in the world, and hardship and pain. And my students know this now. Theyve seen anger in the world, and it makes sense to them, and now it seems right to see it on the page.

26 October 2016

"Give Me Love"

Today at The Los Angeles Review of Books, I have an essay about Marilynne Robinson, love, marriage, God, and our democracy. It was a long time in the works and I hope youll read.

02 July 2016

When the Rewards Can Be So Great

This month sees the release of Pacific University Presss first book, When the Rewards Can Be So Great: Essays on Writing and the Writing Life, edited by the poet Kwame Dawes. Im proud to have a craft lecture included there alongside those of my colleagues Sanda Alcosser, Steve Amick, Ellen Bass, Marvin Bell, Carolyn Coman, Claire Davis, Debra Gwartney, Laura Hendrie, Pam Houston, Valerie Laken, Dorianne Laux, David Long, Mike Magnuson, John McNally, Benjamin Percy, and Mary Helen Stefaniak.

My essay, The Courage to Sound like Ourselves, can be found here. The book is available here.

18 June 2016

Pacific University MFA in Writing, June 16-26

Day one of this seasons Pacific University MFA in Writing residency is in the books. The day featured talks by Ellen Bass, Chris Abani, and Debra Gwartney. Many, many more to come, including guest lectures by Dan Raeburn, Garth Greenwell, Tyehimba Jess, Willy Vlautin, and others. Im incredibly happy to be back in Forest Grove, Oregon, with this group. The residency goes through Sunday, June 26. Congratulations to all the graduates!