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Nature and African-American Writers

Posted By Cassie Myers On Feb 25, 2010 @ 9:37 am In Arts | Comments Disabled


Get ready for the symposium of your life, because on March 4-5, Berkeley is hosting a symposium [1] to “explore 400 rich years of African American nature writing, as evidenced in a new, first-ever anthology of nature poetry by black writers.”

Some may think that African-American nature writing is not very common, but, well, that’s just plain wrong. Cecil Giscombe, African-American poet and UCB English prof, explains it this way: “Nature is everywhere in writing, yet public presentations of writing about nature tend to cast it as something that white writers do.”

He and countless other poets, writers, and academics (including our own Carolyn Finney and Robert Hass) will discuss black writers’ contributions to nature writing starting March 4 at noon at the weekly Lunch Poems program. The symposium will continue with evening readings and discussion panels later that day and on March 5.

This is also about going green in a diverse and meaningful way. As Finney states,

“Diversity programs must do more than simply invite people of different cultural backgrounds to the table. They must be willing to let go of the assumption that their view of the environment is a universal one, and be ready to collaborate with people to create new ways of framing and thinking about the environment.”

Well when it comes to going green, God knows we’ll need all the help we can get. This symposium line-up is impressive, the topic is intriguing, and it should shed some light on the past as well as our (ideally) greener future. So stop dawdling and RSVP here [2].

Image source: [email protected] [3] under Creative Commons
Symposium to explore black nature writers [UC Berkeley News [1]]

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URL to article: http://clog.dailycal.org/2010/02/25/nature-and-african-american-writers/

URLs in this post:

[1] hosting a symposium: http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2010/02/23_nature.shtml

[2] here: http://bie.berkeley.edu/blacknature

[3] [email protected]: http://www.flickr.com/photos/banibani/233804199/

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