MA Creative Thesis Defense for Chantelle Rideout

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2:00pm in Carleton Hall, Room 304

Title: “a harmony of spheres”

"a harmony of spheres" explores synaesthetia as a poetic trope and as the psychological experience of those who literally hear colours or see sounds. The title refers to Pythagoras' synaesthetic claim that he could hear the music of the cosmos and that, allegedly, he was the only one who could hear it. The synaesthetic response to music appears in these poems as a representation of multiplicity and simultaneity. Combining polysensuality with literary and musical polyphony and a feminist dialogics, the poems in this collection allow multiple voices, experiences, and interpretations to cohabit. Rather than privileging any one over another, rather than enforcing linearity, these poems construct and deconstruct different possible selves and identities. Engaging with the ideas of lyric poets Jan Zwicky, Dennis Lee, and Robert Bringhurst, "a harmony of spheres" uses words as musical instruments to create resonance in the spaces between perception and conception, consonance and dissonance, poetry and music.

Students, faculty, staff, and the public are welcome!