Common Ground

Publishing-in-Transit: Tamaas

Featuring Sarah Riggs, Safaa Fathy, Alisha Mascarenhas, and Cole Swensen


12 p.m. Eastern / 9 a.m. Pacific

Sarah Riggs, Safaa Fathy, and Alisha Mascarenhas of inter-cultural organization Tamaas join writer and critic Cole Swensen for a conversation on literary publishing. We open and conclude with readings from guests.

In this talk

Publishing-in-Transit is a monthly series celebrating contemporary literary editors, all of the often-unrecognized work that they do, and the community-based and conversational nature of contemporary innovative literary publishing.

View our past episodes:

New York Review Books →

Tender Buttons Press →

New Directions →

Ugly Duckling Presse →

Cave Canem →

Sarah Riggs

Picture of Sarah Riggs.
Photo by Omar Berrada.
Writer and artist Sarah Riggs was born in New York where she is now based, after over a decade in Paris. Before directing Six Lives: A Cinepoem, she produced The Tangier 8 at the Cinémathèque de Tanger in Morocco. She is the author of seven books of poetry in English, the book of essays Word Sightings: Poetry and Visual Media in Stevens, Bishop, & O’Hara (Routledge, 2002), and has translated six books of contemporary French poetry into English, including Etel Adnan’s TIME, which won the Griffin International Poetry Prize and the Best Translated Book Award in 2020. She is the director of the international arts organization Tamaas which focuses on earth arts justice, film, and an annual poetry translation seminar.

Safaa Fathy

Photo of Safaa Fathy looking out of a window.
Poet, filmmaker, and essayist Safaa Fathy was born in Egypt and obtained her PhD from the Sorbonne in Paris in 1993. She has been Director of Programme at the International College of Philosophy (2010–2016). She wrote Ordalie and Terreur with an introduction by Jacques Derrida, with whom she signed Tourner les mots. Her most recent poetry books are Revolution goes through walls (SplitLevel ed.) and A name to the sea (Dar Al Nahda). Her last play is Aquarius, in Sillas en la frontera. Her last films are Mohammad saved from the waters, Derrida’s elsewhere, and Nom à la mer. Her most recent essays are “Au nom de la Mural” (Europe N. 1053-1053) and “De mur en mur” (rue Descartes N.92).

Alisha Mascarenhas

Picture of Alisha Mascarenhas on the street at night.
Poet, teacher, and literary translator Alisha Mascarenhas is most recently the author of Contagion Fields, published with the Belladonna* 2021 chaplet series. Alisha is co-editor of _READ: A Journal of Inter-Translation_, and lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Cole Swensen

A black and white photo of poet Cole Swensen.
Photo by Anthony Hayward
Poet Cole Swensen is the author of 17 volumes of poetry and a collection of critical essays, Noise That Stays Noise. A book of hybrid poem-essays, Art in Time, was published by Nightboat in 2021. A former Guggenheim Fellow, she has been a finalist for the National Book Award and has been awarded the Iowa Poetry Prize, the SF State Poetry Center Book Award, and the National Poetry Series. She has also translated over 20 volumes of poetry, prose, and art criticism from French and won the 2004 PEN USA Award in Literary Translation.