Sunday, March 16, 2014

March 21 Splendid Wake Event: Black Intellectual History, Wounded Warrior Project, Spoken Word

A SPLENDID WAKE: PART II: UNUSUAL LITERARY PROGRAM TO TAKE PLACE MARCH 21, 6:30-8:00 P.M., Gelman Library, George Washington University, Suite 702, 2130 H Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. Free and Open to the Public!

"In the Shadow of the Capitol" is just one of three unusual literary topics to be discussed March 21 at George Washington University’s Gelman Library.

Part of "A Splendid Wake," a project to document poets and literary movements in the nation’s capital from 1900-present, poets and panelists will report on experimental contemporary poetry, warrior poetry projects, and on D.C’'s African-American intellectual/creative activity during years of segregation in Washington.

Moderating the experimental poetry panel will be poet, writer and performer Silvana Straw. Panelists Magus Magnus, Poets Theatre and "nonmainstream poetics," Natalie Illum, activist, poet and storyteller, a producer of "Capturing Fire," and Derrick Weston Brown, Cave Canem Fellow and founder of "The Nine on the Ninth" reading series, will discuss language poetry, women's community, spoken word, and slam.

The panel on Veterans’ Poetry will feature Sunil Freeman, Assistant Director of The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, Frederick Foote, M.D., Director of the Warrior Poetry Project at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, and Maritza Rivera, an Army veteran, poet, and participant in the Warrior Poetry Project.

"In the Shadow of the Capitol," with Jim Beall, astrophysicist, poet, and project administrator of the original oral history project, will provide a glimpse of the two-day event by that name, which occurred in 1981 at the Folger Shakespeare Library. Transcripts of this conference serve as an invaluable treasury of eye-witness African American history. James Counts Early, Director of Cultural Heritage Policy at the Smithsonian Institution, will speak about Sterling Brown.

Annual programs of "A Splendid Wake" are scheduled on the vernal equinox, as an ongoing effort to provide a living repository.

Gelman Librarian Jennifer King launched the wiki for "A Splendid Wake" in 2013 (

The wiki is open to contributions of information about the diverse and unique life of poetry that evolved and continues in and around the nation’s capital.

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