Jason Allen-Paisant: Self-Portrait as Othello

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Friday 19 July 2024

6:30 pm

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The interlocking poems of Jason Allen-Paisant’s second collection, Self-Portrait as Othello, imagine Othello in the urban landscapes of modern London, Paris and Venice and invent the kinds of narrative he might tell about his intersecting identities.

Self-Portrait as Othello won the Forward Prize for Best Collection 2023 and the T.S. Eliot Prize 2023. It was shortlisted for the Writers’ Prize 2024 and longlisted for the 2024 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature. It was awarded the Spring 2023 Poetry Book Society Choice Award.

This event is presented in association with Poetry Ireland.

Admission: €16

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Poetic memoir and ekphrastic experiment, Self-Portrait as Othello focuses on a character at once fictional and real. Othello here represents a structure of feeling that was emerging in seventeenth-century Venice, and is still with us. Portraiting himself as Othello, Jason refracts his European travels and considers the Black male body, its presence, transgressiveness and vulnerabilities. Othello’s intertwined identities as ‘immigrant’ and ‘Black’, which often operate as mutually reinforcing vectors, speak to us in the landscape of twenty-first- century Europe.


This event is presented in association with Poetry Ireland

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Jason Allen-Paisant

Jason Allen-Paisant is a Jamaican writer and academic who works as a senior lecturer in Critical Theory and Creative Writing at the University of Manchester. He’s the author of two...

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