Saturday, January 9, 2010

Kahlil Almustafa: The People's Inauguration: Poetry & Dialogue on the one-year anniversary of Obama's Inauguration

kahlil almustafa, The People’s Poet and author of From Auction Block to Oval Office leads an interactive event combining performance poetry and critical dialogue commemorating the one-year anniversary of President Obama’s inauguration.

When: January 20th, 2010
Where: The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space
44 Charlton Street (on the corner of Charlton and Varick)
New York, NY 10014
Time: Doors 6:30pm, Poetry & Panel 7pm


Panelists include:

  • Rosa Clemente - 2008 Green Party Vice-Presidential Candidate
  • Cindy Sheehan - author of "Not One More Mother's Child"
  • Michael Skolnik - Political Director to Russell Simmons & Editor for

From Auction Block to Oval Office Book CoverAbout the event:

To commemorate the one-year anniversary of Obama's inauguration, kahlil almustafa, The People's Poet, leads an interactive session combining performance poetry and critical dialogue. Reading from his fifth collection of poetry, FROM AUCTION BLOCK TO OVAL OFFICE: 100 POEMS IN 100 DAYS OF OBAMA'S PRESIDENCY (MVMT Publishing, January 2010) kahlil explores the hopes, fears, contradictions and complexity which come with the election of the United States’ first African-American president.

Written in the voice of a young, African-American male, a romantic revolutionary, and an intellectual, these poems capture a nation teetering between danger and opportunity, cynicism and hope.

"kahlil almustafa’s poems are extraordinary in their political complexity and aesthetic sensibility. His language in From Auction Block to Oval Office is crystal-clear and the ideas are continually provocative."

- Howard Zinn, author, A People’s History of the United States

This event will be interactive. The panel will respond to the critical questions raised by the poems. Audience members will have the opportunity to create their own poems. Panelists to be announced.

Some of the questions to be addressed:

  • How do we create a space for people to express the ways Barack Obama has inspired them and create a space for principled criticism?
  • Is this the closing of a chapter in the American narrative beginning with the auction block and concluding with the Obamas in the White House? Or is the narrative of African enslavement being used to promote the idea of America perfecting its democracy?
  • It has been said that the Hip-Hop generation greatly impacted the election in 2008. How has the Hip Hop generation been impacted by the campaign, Obama’s presidency, and how will the Hip-Hop generation continue to be engaged?

The event is powered by the Mighty Mighty MVMT