Poetry for Social Justice: Online
This class is for poets who want to join the long tradition of poetry as a force for social change. Over the course of six weeks, we will explore and write poetry that engages with the social and political issues that we are most passionate about: be it digging into personal histories and identities, writing about lesser-voiced stories and people, or directly engaging in political and social movements. We'll challenge the traditional “canon” by reading and discussing poems from many different cultural traditions and political realities, from the Harlem Renaissance, the Black Arts Movement, decolonial writings from Pacific Islander poets, writing around contemporary movements like Black Lives Matter, poetry about climate change, and writing by LGBTQQ writers. Poets will include Lucille Clifton, Langston Hughes, Amiri Baraka, Haunani Kay-Trask, Craig Santos Perez, Douglas Kearney, Danez Smith, Suheir Hammad, as well as writings and excerpts from Frantz Fanon and Aime Cesaire, and more.
Each week, we’ll discuss a new social-action theme, such as reclaiming our names (personal history), heroes and heroines, poetry of protest, and writing about race, gender and sexual orientation. We’ll examine poems that reflect that theme, and then engage with it in our own work through writing prompts. Throughout the class, you will receive feedback on your poems geared towards honing and strengthening both the craft and content of your work, to develop at least two polished drafts.
Students will leave the class more familiar with and able to craft poetry addressing social justice themes, a broadened sense of the literary "canon," with two or more drafts and the tools and feedback to revise them.
*NOTE that while our handy dandy "Schedule" tab states a 6-7pm class time, there are actually no live meetings for this class! Weekly lessons and assignments open each Wednesday. Students will receive an invitation to Wet Ink, our online class platform, before 5pm on the first day of class.
Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.
For more more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.
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