On Friday, October 27, acclaimed poet and 2016 MacArthur Foundation Fellow Claudia Rankine will read from her prize-winning book Citizen: An American Lyric in the Gertrude C. Ford Recital Hall at Millsaps. A part of the Friday Forum series, the reading will begin at 12:50 p.m. and is free and open to the public. Lemuria Books will have copies of Ms. Rankine’s books for sale, and she will be available to sign them before the reading, beginning at 12:20 p.m. A reception will follow the program.
As a prelude to this event, the Mississippi Experimental Music Ensemble, under the direction of Dr. Jason Rosenberg, will perform “Boots on the Ground,” a choreographed work inspired in part by Citizen.
Rankine is the Frederick Iseman Professor of Poetry at Yale University and is a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. She is the author of five collections of poetry, including Don’t Let Me Be Lonely; two plays including Provenance of Beauty: A South Bronx Travelogue; numerous video collaborations, and is the editor of several anthologies including The Racial Imaginary: Writers on Race in the Life of the Mind.
For Citizen, Rankine won the Forward Prize for Poetry, the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry (Citizen was also nominated in the criticism category, making it the first book in the award’s history to be a double nominee), the Los Angeles Times Book Award, the PEN Open Book Award, and the NAACP Image Award. A finalist for the National Book Award, Citizen also holds the distinction of being the only poetry book to be a New York Times bestseller in the nonfiction category. Among her numerous awards and honors, Rankine is the recipient of the Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry, Poets & Writers’ Jackson Poetry Prize and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, United States Artists, and the National Endowment of the Arts.
Support for this Friday Forum event comes from the Mississippi Humanities Council, the Mississippi Arts Commission, the Millsaps Visiting Writers Series, the Office of the Provost of the College, the Millsaps Chisholm Fund, and the Millsaps Institute for Civic and Professional Engagement.