R284. Tikkun Olam: Jewish Poets on Mending the World

Room 14, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Thursday, March 8, 2018
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


Dating back 2,000 years, the concept of Tikkun Olam conveys a responsibility among Jews to help repair the world. This panel will explore how Jewish poets interpret that ethical commandment in their work and balance the solitude of writing with social engagement and activism. Panelists will discuss the particular ways poetry can (and can’t) respond to cultural and environmental crisis, and how writers can, as Grace Paley exhorts, “Go forth with fear and courage and rage to save the world.”



Robin Beth Schaer is the author of the poetry collection Shipbreaking, She has been a fellow at Yaddo, Djerassi, Saltonstall, and MacDowell. Her work has appeared in Tin House, Bomb, The Paris Review, and elsewhere. She worked as a deckhand aboard the Tall Ship Bounty and teaches writing in Ohio.

Joy Katz’s latest poetry collection is All You Do Is Perceive. Her work in progress, White: An Abstract, attempts to document American whiteness. A former NEA fellow, Katz collaborates in the activist art collective Ifyoureallyloveme. She teaches at Carlow University.

Erika Meitner is the author of four books of poems, including Makeshift Instructions for Vigilant Girls; Ideal Cities, which was a 2009 National Poetry Series winner; and Copia. She is an associate professor of English at Virginia Tech, where she directs the MFA program in creative writing.

Rosebud Ben-Oni received a 2014 NYFA Fellowship in Poetry and a CantoMundo Fellowship in 2013. She is the author of Solecism, a poetry collection, and is an editorial advisor for VIDA: Women in Literary Arts.

Sam Sax


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center