Adjunct Action | Poets in Action: Jessica Beard, Hugh Behm-Steinberg, David Buuck, Stephanie Young

Sunday, November 15, 2015, 1:45 pm to 2:45 pm
Photo of Howard Zinn in front of bookshelf
This panel, as part of the second annual Howard Zinn Book Fair, features four local poet-writer-activists in conversation, all who work as adjunct faculty in at least one of the five Bay Area private colleges where adjuncts have recently voted to be represented by the Service Employees International Union. Free.
Tillie Olsen Room, City College of San Francisco, Mission Center, 1125 Valencia Street, San Francisco
The Poetry Center, Labor Archives and Research Center, Service Employees International Union Local 1021, California Faculty Association-San Francisco chapter
The Poetry Center
Event extras: 

Adjunct Action

Adjunct Action is a national drive for “contingent” faculty workers, who across the U.S. teach 70 percent of the courses at colleges and universities. Part-time workers for the most, adjunct faculty get compensated in salary, benefits and worker protections at levels far below tenure-track or tenured faculty, and many until now have not had recourse to collective bargaining and union representation. This is changing, with Mills College, San Francisco Art Institute, California College of the Arts, St. Mary’s College and Dominican University adjunct workers voting for SEIU affiliation, and working at various stages to replace administrative policy with negotiated worker contracts and protections.

Featured panelists

All work as adjunct faculty and are engaged in the unionization process at San Francisco Art Institute, Mills College or California College of the Arts:

Jessica Beard is a literary scholar working in experimental writing, archives, book arts, textual studies, and critical theory; she recently received her PhD from UC Santa Cruz, with her dissertation focused on the chaotic archive of Emily Dickinson.

Hugh Behm-Steinberg’s works include The Opposite of Work and Shy Green Fields (both poetry), two libretti to operas, and the text/sound audio CD, Oa.

David Buuck is the founder of BARGE (Bay Area Research Group in Enviro-aesthetics), co-founder/editor of poetics journal Tripwire and author of SITE CITE CITY and An Army of Lovers (with Juliana Spahr).

Stephanie Young’s books of poetry include Telling the Future Off, Picture Palace and Ursula or University. She coedited (also with Juliana Spahr) the book A Megaphone: Some Enactments, Some Numbers and Some Essays about the Continued Usefulness of Crotchless-pants-and-a-machine-gun Feminism.


Jessica Lawless, a former adjunct professor, is an organizer with SEIU Local 1021 specifically working on the Adjunct Action first contract and metro organizing campaigns. A visual artist, writer and longtime activist she is a regular contributor to make/shift: feminisms in motion, she has shown her work in spaces as varied as the Chicago Anarchist Film Festival and REDCAT in Los Angeles.

Sheila Tully, Ph.D. is president of the California Faculty Association’s San Francisco chapter and co-chair of the association’s women's caucus. She is a lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at San Francisco State University.