The Poetics of Negation

In this five-week online workshop we’ll explore and discuss works that operate with the concept of negation, which is always both destructive and, at the same, affirmative. When, for instance, Antigone engages in her suicidal “No,” her “No” is not merely a “No,” but also at the same time marks the space between what she will and will not do. During the course we’ll read and engage with texts that engage with the concept of negation in its many forms. Some of the work we may read and discuss include texts by Hegel, Freud, Kafka, Robert Walser and Yōko Tawada. Taking the concept of negation as our starting point, we’ll spend the opening of each class reading examples of works that engage with this concept. Then we’ll spend the rest of class engaging in generative writing exercises and sharing our writing. Class sessions will meet synchronously via Zoom every Saturday, and assignments, poems and critiques will be shared via Wet Ink.

Workshop Details


  • Teacher: Cynthia Cruz
  • Level: II
  • Dates: Feb 18–Mar 18, 2023
  • Time: Saturdays, 11:00 am–2:00 pm (ET)
  • Location: online via Zoom
  • Cost: $395
  • Class size: 5–10 students
  • Registration deadline: SUN, FEB 12, 2023
  • Earlybird discount: $15 off through SUN, FEB 12
Cynthia Cruz

Cynthia Cruz

Cynthia Cruz is the author of seven collections of poems. Hotel Oblivion, her seventh collection, was published in the spring of 2022 by Four Way Books; Disquieting: Essays on Silence, a collection of critical essays exploring the concept of silence as a form of resistance, was published by Book*hug in 2019; and The Melancholia of Class: A Manifesto for the Working Class, an examination of Freudian melancholia and the working class, was published by Repeater Books in 2021. Forthcoming in 2023 are a novella, Steady Diet of Nothing; a collection of poems, Back to the Woods; and a book on the working class and negative freedom. Cruz is pursuing a PhD in philosophy at the European Graduate School.