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Alexandra Basekic

(Pen Name: Alexandra Oliver)



Thesis: House Music: Anxiety, Order, Form, and the Domestic in the Works of Elizabeth Bishop, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Anne Sexton

Supervisor: Dr. Jeffery Donaldson


Alexandra is a PhD candidate who holds an MA in Drama (University of Toronto 1992) and an MFA in Creative Writing (Stonecoast Program, University of Southern Maine, 2012). Her research interests include American Literature and formal prosody, particularly with regard to the works of women poets describing anxiety and the domestic. She also has an abiding interest in film and the pedagogy of creative writing. A working poet, editor and translator, Alexandra is the author of Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway (Biblioasis 2013; winner of the 2014 Pat Lowther Memorial Award) and Let the Empire Down (Biblioasis 2016; nominee for the 2017 Pat Lowther Memorial Award), as well as the 2018 chapbook On the Oven Sits a Maiden (Frog Hollow Press 2018). She is the co-editor (with Annie Finch) of Measure for Measure: An Anthology of Poetic Meters (Everyman’s Library/Random House 2015) and has served as a contributing editor for ARC Poetry and Partisan. She is a co-founder (and past editor) of The Rotary Dial, Canada’s first journal of exclusively formalist poetry. Alexandra has performed her work at venues including the National Poetry Slam, the International Festival of Authors in Toronto, the Vancouver Writers’ Festival, the Ottawa International Writers’ Festival, and the Newburyport Writers’ Festival, as well as for CBC Radio and NPR.

Selected Publications:

On the Oven Sits a Maiden. Frog Hollow Press, 2018.

Let the Empire Down. Biblioasis, 2016.

Meeting the Tormentors in Safeway. Biblioasis, 2013.

Measure for Measure: An Anthology of Poetic Meters. Everyman’s Library/Random House, 2015.

Conference/Residency Presentations:

Staffing the “THE WRITER IS IN” booth Creating Space IX (McMaster Family Medicine Conference), McMaster University, April 12—13, 2019.

“Here is the House to Hold Me: Form, Domesticity, and Resistance in the Poems of Charlotte Perkins Gilman” University of Toronto Graduate English Conference (“In Forms”) April 26, 2019.

“The (Avenging) Angel of the House: Writing the Domestic as a Transformative Act” Stonecoast MFA Program Summer Residency, Freeport, ME. July 2013.

“Meter for Beginners: Making Old Music New in the Modern Classroom” Stonecoast MFA Program Winter Residency, Freeport, ME, January 2013.

“Poetry and Cinema” West Chester Poetry Conference, West Chester, PA, June 2012. “Immaculate Projections: Using Cinema as a Tool to Make More (and Better) Poems” Stonecoast MFA Program Winter Residency, Freeport, ME, January 2012.