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Nina Crews Talks Seeing Into Tomorrow: Haiku by Richard Wright

Award-winning author, Nina Crews, gives insight into Haiku poetry through her new book, Seeing Into Tomorrow: Haiku by Richard Wright

Award-winning author Nina Crews in her first television interview sits down with What's The 411's book correspondent, Luvon Roberson, to talk about her book, Seeing Into Tomorrow: Haiku by Richard Wright.

Many know the award-winning writer, Richard Wright as a novelist, through his books, Native Son and Black Boy, but few know that Richard Wright also wrote poetry, and fewer knew about Richard Wright's work with Haiku.

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Claudia Rankine: 2014 National Book Award Finalist Uses Poetry to Combat Racism

Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Claudia Rankine is a poet, playwright, university professor, and a 2014 National Book Award Finalist for Poetry for her book, CITIZEN: AN AMERICAN LYRIC.

As What's The 411TV's book editor, I spoke with Claudia Rankine at the 65th Annual National Book Awards on November 19, 2014, at Cipriani Wall Street. CITIZEN: AN AMERICAN LYRIC, Ms. Rankine's nominated book, uses the power of poetry, prose, and images to shed light on the insidious behavior of micro-aggression.

Watch video interview with National Book Award Finalist for Poetry, Claudia Rankine

Claudia Rankine is the Henry G. Lee Professor of English at Pomona College and the author of four collections of poetry, including Don't Let Me Be Lonely: An American Lyric, PLOT, The End of the Alphabet, and Nothing in Nature is Private, which received the Cleveland State Poetry Prize. She is a winner of the Jackson Poetry Prize and a recipient of fellowships from the Academy of American Poetry, the National Endowments for the Arts, and the Lannan Foundation. In 2006, she served as a Judge for the National Book Award for Poetry.

To hear Claudia Rankine in her own words and to read an excerpt of CITIZEN: AN AMERICAN LYRIC, click here.

For more information about Claudia Rankine, visit:

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Poet Fred Moten: 2014 National Book Award Finalist for THE FEEL TRIO

Poet and University of California at Riverside professor, Fred Moten, is a 2014 National Book Awards Finalist for Poetry for his book, THE FEEL TRIO.

As What's The 411TV's book editor, I had an opportunity to talk with Fred Moten at the 65th Annual National Book Awards on November 19, 2014, at Cipriani Wall Street.  THE FEEL TRIO is Cecil Taylor, Tony Oxley and William Parker and the book brings movement and music forward through poetry. Even James Brown comes to life within the pages of THE FEEL TRIO.

WATCH VIDEO: National Book Awards Finalist Fred Moten

Fred Moten is a professor of English at the University of California—Riverside and the author of In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition, Hughson's Tavern, B. Jenkins, and co-author, with Stefano Harney, of The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning and Black Study. In 2009, Moten was recognized as one of ten "New American Poets" by the Poetry Society of America. He is also co-founder and co-publisher (with Joseph Donahue) of a small literary press called Three Count Pour. 

Hear Fred Moten in his own words and read more information about the THE FEEL TRIO, here.


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Russell Simmons on Def Poetry

WATCH VIDEO: Simmons sees poetry as an expression of what’s going on inside and a medium that promotes visionaries

In this video, music, film, and television entrepreneur, Russell Simmons, who was at a rehearsal for Def Poetry Jam talks with What’s The 411 about the benefits of poetry and rap.

Simmons says that poetry is beneficial for young people, as poetry allows for self-expression of what’s going on inside.

He also states that even rap was a great expression of our lifestyle, sometimes our frustrations, sometimes our anger, and when anger is left inside the response is limited and the response to the anger is much stronger.

The recognition of blessings is always inside and poetry is always uplifting, and deeply spiritual.

Poetry also promotes visionaries out of our young people.

Def Poetry Jam, a spoken word poetry television series hosted by Mos Def and airing on HBO, is produced by Russell Simmons.

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