Classics of Black American Protest Poetry

Presented by Poetry in America

Arts & Society
Elisa New

Elisa New

Professor of American Literature, Harvard University,

Great poetry allows us to discover the many sides of ourselves and the world around us – both its beauty and its injustice. This audio course “Classics of Black American Protest Poetry” explores the U.S. tradition of Black protest through poetry.

Classics of Black American Protest Poetry

12 Episodes


5 min

1. Introduction to Poetry in America: Classics of Black America Protest Poetry

14 min

2. Introduction to The Harlem Renaissance

9 min

3. "Harlem" by Langston Hughes with Poet Sonia Sanchez

13 min

4. “Harlem” by Langston Hughes with Jazz Pianist Herbie Hancock and President Bill Clinton

17 min

5. "Atlantic City Waiter" by Countee Cullen with Poet Clint Smith

17 min

6. "Let America Be America Again" by Langston Hughes with Poet Joshua Bennett

17 min

7. "To Certain Critics" by Countee Cullen with Poet Clint Smith

18 min

8. "America Will Be" by Joshua Bennett

14 min

9. “a song in the front yard” by Gwendolyn Brooks with Actor Alfre Woodard

21 min

10. “the mother’s story” by Lucille Clifton with Poet Eileen Myles

19 min

11. "To Prisoners" by Gwendolyn Brooks with Poet Reginald Dwayne Betts and Actor Anna Deavere Smith

28 min

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