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Ada Smailbegovic


My research explores the intersections between poetry and history of science, environmental literature, feminist and queer theories of materiality, animal studies, and affect theory. I am particularly interested in how practices of observation, experimentation and description structure forms of attention in relation to the material world in the context of the natural sciences, but also in the context of poetics, specifically within traditions in twentieth-century and contemporary North American poetry that may be characterized as experimental and avant-garde. In parallel with this, my research explores how poetic form can contribute to an understanding of morphologies of signification within non-human material worlds in fields such as biosemiotics. I am currently completing a book on poetry and science and the manner in which non-human forms of materiality relate to language and time, titled Soft Matter of Molecules, Fibers, Tissues, Clouds: Poetics of Liveliness. I am also developing a second book project that addresses how aesthetic objects, such as poems and other durational artworks, can open up possibilities for sensing temporal scales of change that may be imperceptible to human beings but may affect ecological relations between organisms in the context of climate change, provisionally titled Snail Cinema: Tiny Politics in the Chthulocene. Scholarly articles include: “Of Poodles, Mockingbirds and Beetles: Gertrude Stein’s Zoopoetics,” (in a special issue of College Literature on the theme of "Lively Words: The Politics and Poetics of Experimental Writing," 2019); “From Code to Shape: Material-Semiotic Imbrications in the ‘Particle Zoo’ of Molecular Poetics” (differences, 2018); “Cloud Writing: Describing Soft Architectures of Change in the Anthropocene,” (Art in the Anthropocene, 2015); “Affective Ethologies: Monk Parakeets and Non-Human Inflections in Affect Theory,” (Angelaki, 2015). Poetic work has included Avowal of What Is Here (JackPine Press, 2009); Of the Dense and Rare (Triple Canopy, 2013); “Some Disordered Interior Geometries” (Reanimation Library, 2015); The Forest / On Waiting (Doublecross Press, 2017); “Colors and Shapes (without monuments)” (Berkeley Poetry Review, 2018) and Descriptions of Invisible Objects (Loose Joints Press, 2019). I am also a co-founding editor of the digital publishing platform for interdisciplinary research in poetics - The Organism for Poetic Research (