The Graduate Center Announces the Publication of “Lost & Found Series V” Featuring Works of Kathy Acker, William S. Burroughs, Langston Hughes and Jean Sénac

Media contact:  Tanya Domi, 212-817-7283, or
Sampson Starkweather, 212-817-2023,

The Graduate Center Announces the Publication of “Lost & Found Series V
Featuring Works of Kathy Acker, William S. Burroughs, Langston Hughes and Jean Sénac

NEW YORK, June 11, 2015 -- The Graduate Center, City University of New York announces the release of Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative Series V, commonly known as “Lost & Found,” featuring the recovered works of Kathy Acker, William S. Burroughs, Langston Hughes, and Jean Sénac: four major writers responding to sweeping socio-political shifts around the globe.

Comprised of five chapbooks, these varied texts connect the liberatory politics and radical writing practices of New York in the 1970s, France and Algiers in the 1960s, and the Soviet Union and Turkestan in the 1930s. The chapbooks are available June 23rd and have been a prominent project of the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center since 2010.

“Like a team of ghostbusters, Lost & Found brings our cultural past back to life, finding new works and unknown chapters in the lives and archives of some of our greatest literary figures, from Amiri Baraka, Frank O’Hara, and Kathy Acker to Adrienne Rich, Muriel Rukeyser and Diane di Prima, with many in-between,” said Ammiel Alcalay, general editor of Lost & Found and professor of English and Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center and Queens College.  

While working at a strip club in Times Square in 1972, Kathy Acker writes Homage to Leroi Jones and other “exercises,” as part of an effort to map her “total present consciousness.” In The Travel Agency is on Fire, William S. Burroughs performs cut-ups of authors related to his personal canon. Across the ocean, Algerian poet Jean Sénac writes Le soleil sous les armes [The Sun Under the Weapons], a revolutionary manifesto urging for nothing short of total cultural transformation and political independence. Langston Hughes documents his travels between Moscow to Tashkent in 1932, excerpted here as part of Langston Hughes: Poems, Photos & Notebooks from Turkestan.

Lost & Found

The chapbooks in Series V are as follows:  
Kathy Acker: Homage to Leroi Jones & Other Early Works, editor, Gabrielle Kappes;
William S. Burroughs: The Travel Agency is on Fire, editor, Alex Wermer-Colan;
Langston Hughes: Poems, Photos & Notebooks from Turkestan, editor Zohra Saed;
Jean Sénac: The Sun Under the Weapons, Correspondence & Notes from Algeria (Parts I & II), editor, Kai Krienke.

For more information and to order Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative, visit: For interviews with Ammiel Alcalay, or the editors of Lost & Found Series V, contact Tanya Domi,, 212-817-7283.

Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative publishes unexpected, genre-bending works by important 20th century writers. Poised at the intersection of scholarly investigation, innovative publishing, and cultural preservation, each Lost & Found chapbook emphasizes the importance of collaborative and archival research. Conducting research in personal and institutional archives located throughout the country and abroad, Lost & Found editors—doctoral students at the Graduate Center, CUNY— illuminate understudied aspects of literary, cultural, and political history. Each year, these efforts result in the production of a new Lost & Found series, that includes extra-poetic material such as correspondence, journals, and transcriptions of lectures. Working alongside living writers and their heirs, the imprint also organizes public programs that promote new, cooperative models of textual scholarship and publication. In addition, Lost & Found has joined with select publishers for book length projects emerging from our research, appearing under the general title Lost & Found Elsewhere. Lost & Found is funded in part through the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts, Furthermore: a program of the J.M. Kaplan Fund, and The Leslie Scalapino–O Books Fund.

The Graduate Center (GC) is the principal doctorate-granting institution of the City University of New York. Offering more than 30 doctoral degrees and fostering globally significant research in a wide variety of centers and institutes, the GC affords rigorous academic training in the humanities, sciences, and social sciences. It is home to a core faculty of approximately 140 teachers and mentors, along with 1700 faculty from across the CUNY colleges and New York City’s cultural, academic and scientific institutions. Through its public programs, the Graduate Center enhances the City’s intellectual and cultural life.

Submitted on: JUN 11, 2015

Category: Center for the Humanities | Press Room