Lift Every Voice: African American Poetry: 250 Years of Struggle and Song

Chicago Public Library partnered with Library of America, American Writers Museum and The Poetry Foundation to celebrate the publication of African American Poetry: 250 Years of Struggle and Song, a definitive new anthology edited by poet and Schomburg Center Director Kevin Young. 

We invited a few of our favorite voices to bring powerful poems from the new anthology to life. Kevin Young, Billy Branch, Pemon Rami, Roy Kinsey, Avery R. Young, Emily Hooper Lansana,  Eve Ewing, Christine Wack and others are all part of the program, which was curated by Sylvia Ewing. 

Lift Every Voice is directed by Library of America in partnership with the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Academy of American Poets, the National Book Foundation, Cave Canem, The Poetry Foundation, the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics, and public libraries, arts organizations and bookstores in all 50 states. Major funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Emerson Collective.

Library of America is a nonprofit organization that champions the nation’s cultural heritage by publishing America’s greatest writing in authoritative new editions and providing resources and public programming enabling people to explore this rich, living legacy.