This event will take place via Zoom.


Registration not required.

The History of Inaugural Poetry in the United States

Lecture and Poetry Analysis via Zoom

This event will take place via Zoom. Registration not required.


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In this hour-long lecture, we will consider the works of poetry that have attended seven inaugurations of U.S. Presidents since the tradition began sixty years ago with John F. Kennedy and Robert Frost, occurring most recently with Amanda Gorman’s The Hill We Climb at President Biden’s swearing-in two months ago. Together, in watching these lofty performances and reading the arcs of their texts, we will delve headlong into the public square as much as the national stage, where politics meets poetics quadrennially to pen a new stanza in the epic of America.


Mark Olival-Bartley, advisor to the Amerikahaus Literary Circle, teaches composition, creative writing, and American literature at LMU Munich, where he is writing a dissertation on E. A. Robinson’s metasonnet. He is also the resident poet of EcoHealth Alliance, where his pandemic-themed verse is regularly featured in EcoHealth. With Amy Mohr, he co-edited New Interpretations of Harper Lee’s "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "Go Set a Watchman" (Cambridge Scholars, 2019).



Contact: Joanna King, Dominik Raabe


Organizer: Amerikahaus - Bavarian Center for Transatlantic Relations



(Photo: Amanda Gorman recites her inaugural poem "The Hill We Climb" © Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Carlos M. Vazquez II, Creative Commons CC BY 2.0/No changes made, Source: 210120-D-WD757-2466)


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