Former U.S. Poet Laureate Rita Dove and Literary Pioneer Charles Johnson Among the Honorees at the 13th National Black Writers Conference at Medgar Evers College


Edwidge Danticat

Edwidge Danticat, Michael Eric Dyson and Woodie King Jr. celebrated for contributions to Black literary culture.

New York (February 2016) The Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College, CUNY, announces the 13th National Black Writers Conference (NBWC) to be held from Thursday, March 31 through Sunday, April 3, 2016.  The four-day 2016 National Black Writers Conference will be held on the campus of Medgar Evers College, 1650 Bedford Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11225.

Highlights and Special Events:

“Provocateurs: The Symbiotic Relationship Between Photographers and Writers”

Exhibit_nbwc 2016_Chimamanda color copy2 (4)

March 31–April 3, 2016
Opening Reception: Monday, March 28, 2016
6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m
Free and open to the public.



Medgar Evers College
Charles Evans Inniss Memorial Library
1650 Bedford Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11225

A photography exhibition of 30 images featuring works by photographers Laylah Amatullah Barrayn, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Marcia E. Wilson, and Ruddy Roye.


Town Hall Forum: “Legacy and Succession: The Role and Responsibility of the Black Writer and Black Institutions”

Thursday, March 31, 2016; 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Free and open to the public.

Author, poet, and publisher Haki Madhubuti, whose latest book is titled “Taking Bullets: Terrorism and Black Life in Twenty-First Century America, a Poet’s Representation and Challenge ” and Journalist and reporter Ashley Johnson will offer their reflections on the topic of legacy and succession, and the role and responsibility of the Black writer and Black institutions.  This intergenerational conversation will take place as a town hall meeting.



NBWC_POETRYCAFE_Display700 (2)Poetry Café
Thursday, March 31, 2016
Brooklyn Public Library
10 Grand Army Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11238
7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Free and Open to the Public

The 7th Annual Poetry Café is coordinated by Wendy Robinson and the host is Ashley August.

Featured are poets Liza Jessie Peterson and Nkosi Nkululeko , the 2016 NYC Youth Poet Laureate. Emerging poets include Angel S. Aviles, Chanel Dupree, Khadijah Johnson, and Shye Sales.

Opening Night: “Poets Reflect on the State of Contemporary Poetry,”

Friday, April 1, 2016, 6:30 p.m. to 8: p.m.,

Featuring Rita Dove, Rowan Ricardo Phillips and Afaa Michael Weaver.

Suggested Donation for public $10.
NBWC Conference goers: Included with conference registration, no additional donation required.



Saturday, April 2, 2016

Creating Dangerously: Courage and Resistance in the Literature of Black Writers”
2 p.m.–3:30 p.m.

In Edwidge Danticat’s acclaimed book Create Dangerously: The Immigrant Artist at Work, the author explores the passions and the tribulations that writers and artists face in their roles as chroniclers of cultural and political events and as the voices of opposition that strive to be heard under oppressive circumstances. In this discussion, the panelists will talk about the ways literature sheds light on the risks writers take when working under challenging cultural and political situations. They will also discuss the manner in which individual and collective truths are presented in those works for readers to interpret.

Moderator: Victoria Chevalier
Panelists: *Edwidge Danticat and *Charles Johnson

Awards Ceremony

6:45 p.m.– 8 p.m. awards program – PRESENTATION TO HONOREES
Open To The General Public. Suggested Donation $10. (Included in conference registration.)

Rita Dove – Honorary Chair
Edwidge Danticat
Woodie King Jr.
Michael Eric Dyson
Charles Johnson

Suggested Donation for public $10
NBWC Conference goers: Included with conference registration, no additional donation required.

2016 NBWC Jazz Concert and Benefit:

Invitation_NBWC 2016_final

Following the awards presentation on Saturday, April 2, 2016, at 6 p.m., there will be a benefit reception and jazz featuring Dasan Ahanu & Tai Allen accompanied by The Brooklyn Jazz Consortium.

$100 Donation Required*

*Panelists, Presenters, & Talkshop leaders receive gratis entry for themselves ONLY. RSVP is required. Additional guests tickets available for $50. Call the Center for Black Lit. at 718-804-8883 to receive the promotional code to make purchase tickets or contact Maeshay k. Lewis directly at 718-804-8882.


Michael Eric Dyson Photo Credit: Nina-Subin

A Conversation with Dr. Michael Eric Dyson and Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, “Writing Race, Embracing Difference”

April 3, 2016; 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.,

Donation Suggested
Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, author of the recently published “The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America” and Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture discuss race and politics in America.

View full program.

For media requests, contact Gilda Squire, Squire Media and Management Inc. at or 212-928-8090. For information and tickets regarding the Benefit Reception and Jazz Concert, call the Center at 718-804-8883, the NBWC hotline at 718-270-4811, or email