End of 2020 Round-up of Cuvaj se staff, board, volunteer accomplishments!

Tom Simpson

What a year for our brilliant teacher and codirector, Tom Simpson. First and most important he conquered CANCER!! Alhamdulillah and hallelujuah, he’s still with us and starting the new year stronger than ever and cancer-free. In 2020 Tom taught Phillips Exeter Academy courses in: 

  • Religion and Popular Culture (focusing on media literacy, racial / ethnic / religious stereotypes)
  • Global Ethics (focusing on the climate crisis, refugees & migration, authoritarianism) 
  • Human Rights (focusing on refugees & migration, genocide, transitional justice, and decolonization, with guest speakers Aria Aber and Jasminko Halilovic)
  • Silicon Valley Ethics (focusing on the power of media platforms and algorithms to shape the lives and identities of individuals, communities, and societies, with special attention to the spread of misinformation, the intensification of inequality, and the destabilization of democratic societies)

and he did interviews for American Microreviews and Interviews:

He was the summer guest lecture for the Global Citizens Initiative on questions of ethics and justice raised by the global pandemic (I have been a faculty member three times in the past for GCI’s annual Global Citizens Youth Summit, giving plenary lectures and teaching courses on global ethics, leadership, and human rights) 

and he led Summer / Fall Seminars for Cuvaj se with Bosnian students from Prijedor, Gornji Vakuf-Uskoplje, Bihać, Doboj, and Drvar, focusing on racial justice, global ethics, and human rights with guest speakers Guillaume de Fontenay, Chiara Milan, and Samantha Power (in conjunction with the Global Citizens Initiative). 

Thank you, Dear Tom, and here’s to kicking cancer and 2020 to the curb!

Velid Beganovic Borjen

January: – Became Guest Editor of Palette Poetry and Frontier Poetry magazines (responsible for editorial feedback letters)
February: – Published the poem “Cabo da Roca, Portugal” with the IceFloe Press within their online anthology #Geographies (LINK: https://icefloepress.net/2020/02/26/cabo-da-roca-portugal-poem-image-a-reading-by-v-b-borjen/ )

April: – Published a series of paintings entitled “Enter the Quiet”, one of which was used also for Cover Art of the same issue 17 of High Shelf. (LINK: https://www.highshelfpress.com/enterthequiet )

May: – Published the poem “Our Own Plague” with the magazine From Whispers to Roars, as part of Week 5 of their Quarantine Tales series (LINK, requires some scrolling: https://www.fromwhisperstoroars.com/quarantine-tales/2020/5/8/quarantine-tales-a-series-week-5 )
         – Was a finalist in the regional competition organised by the publisher Treci Trg from Belgrade, in the category “First Book of Prose”. The book did not win, but the reading did receive the audience award – a promotion during the Belgrade Book and Poetry Festival. (LINK to the reading in Bosnian: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0JG__qRuuc )
         – Did a reading of one of my poems in Bosnian, “Vanredne vijesti” as part of the 40-day series of quarantine readings organised by the Museum of Literature and Performing Arts of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The series will be archived permanently by the Museum itself. (FB LINK: https://fb.watch/2AIihmNbXY/ )

June: – Published the postcard poem “What You Are Left With” with Rattle, in Issue 68 – Postcard Poems (LINK to the online version published in July: https://www.rattle.com/what-you-are-left-with-by-velid-beganovic-borjen/ )
          – Published part of my doctoral research, the paper “‘God Damn This War’: Virginia Woolf’s Struggle for Peace between the Wars” with E-rea: Revue électronique d’études sur le monde anglophone at the Aix-Marseille University in France (LINK: https://journals.openedition.org/erea/9612 )
August: – Published a series of small postcard paintings, “Postcards to Friends” in NEMA magazine (LINK: https://ne-ma.net/2020/08/11/v-b-borjen-postcards-to-friends/#more-3439 )    
             – Published a short story in Bosnian, “Dvije nijanse plave” En. “Two Shades of Blue”, written in 2010, resurrected by Strane as part of their “Short Story Summer” series (LINK:  http://strane.ba/v-b-borjen-ljeto-kratke-price/  )

September: – Published the poem “Salthill Beach, Galway” in the inaugural issue of The Adriatic (LINK to issue, p. 8: https://issuu.com/theadriatic/docs/the_adriatic_issue_1_final_final )
November: – Participated in the online edition of the Belgrade Book and Poetry Festival with a pre-recorded reading of the short story “Kome cvate magnolija” En. “For Whom the Magnolia Tree Blooms”, from the manuscript which was the finalist of the Treci trg competition (LINK: https://youtu.be/rNol07om0dM?t=2156 )               – Published a series of paintings entitled “Somewhere Ahead of Myself on the Road” in Issue 10 of Parentheses Journal (LINK: http://www.parenthesesjournal.com/issue-10/4-artworks-v-b-borjen/ )
December: – Published a series of b/w photographs in volume 7 of Deracine magazine (LINK, click for PDF: https://deracinemagazine.com/issues/ )

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