Poets Gary Jackson and Yusef Komunyakaa Headline NOMMO African American Authors Series
What: Seventh Annual NOMMO African American Authors Series
Who: Poets Gary Jackson and Yusef Komunyakaa
When: 7 p.m. Thursday, February 24, 2011
Where: Cowles Auditorium, Hubert H. Humphrey Center, University of Minnesota West Bank campus, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis
Tickets: $15. Complimentary tickets available to U of M students and Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Call 612-624-2345 or visit www.tickets.umn.edu
Contacts: Marlo Welshons, University of Minnesota Libraries, email@example.com, 612-625-9148
Preston Smith, University News Service, firstname.lastname@example.org, 612-625-0552
MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL ( 02/9/2011 ) -- Gary Jackson and Yusef Komunyakaa will appear at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24, in Hubert H. Humphrey Center, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis, on the University's West Bank campus. Both Jackson and Komunyakaa will read from and discuss their works with series host Alexs Pate, University of Minnesota professor and author of the novel "Amistad."
The event is part of the annual NOMMO African American Authors Series. This is the fourth year the series has been co-presented by the Givens Foundation for African American Literature and the University of Minnesota Libraries. Additional sponsors for this event are the University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach/Engagement Center, Cave Canem, and Graywolf Press.
"Nommo" is a Dogon word meaning "the magic power of the word."
"Too many vital African American writers, and I count myself among them, find our work sprouting shallow roots on the periphery of public awareness. My conversations with these authors present rare opportunities to publicly define the state of the art of African American literature and to locate our work and contributions within the present authoring of our literary tradition," Pate says.
More about Gary Jackson and Yusef Komunyakaa
Winner of the 2009 Cave Canem Poetry Prize for his manuscript "Missing you, Metropolis," Gary Jackson was born and raised in Topeka, Kansas. He received his MFA in Poetry from the University of New Mexico in 2008 and his poems have appeared in "Inscape," "Magma," "The Literary Bohemian" and local chapbooks. Published by Graywolf Press, "Missing you, Metropolis" is lauded by critics such as Yusef Komunyakaa, who writes that the book "embodies and underscores a voice uniquely shaped and tuned for the 21st century." Jackson currently teaches English as a Second Language in Seoul, South Korea.
Yusef Komunyakaa is the critically acclaimed author of 14 books of poetry, including "Copacetic" and "Neon Vernacular: New & Selected Poems 1977-1989," for which he received the Pulitzer Prize. His latest book of poems, "Warhorses," was published in 2008. His prose is collected in "Blues Notes: Essays, Interviews & Commentaries," and he coedited "The Jazz Poetry Anthology." In addition to the Pulitzer Prize, his honors include the 2004 Shelley Memorial Award, the 2001 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, the Hanes Poetry Prize, and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. He is Professor and Distinguished Senior Poet at New York University.