The Desert Nights, Rising Stars
Writers Conference

Conference Schedule 2019

Conference Schedule 2019

Friday, February 22, 2019, 4:15 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.

Writers of Color in a White Man's Literary World with Rashaad Thomas

Date(s): Friday, February 22, 2019, 4:15 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.
Basha, Old Main (view map)
Genre and Form(s): African American, Asian American, Indigenous, Latinx, Writing Life
Tags: Colonization, Decolonization, Race, Voice, Canon

About the Session

What is it like to be a poet of color in a literary world dominated by white men? What does it mean to be a writer of color without an MFA walking the hallways of the academy’s ivory tower that continue to colonize spaces of color? Writers of color will engage in a discussion exploring questions that are common while existing in a white man’s literary world. Participants will look at two poems and one essay that showcases how writers of color historically have nurtured their authentic voice and given a voice for the silenced. We will explore work of writers of color to generate more conversation around solutions we can use to experiment with strategies physically in our writing to navigate and push the boundaries of the old white man’s canon. Participants will share their stories, experiences, and strategies they’ve used that has help them to survive and be successful. The discussion will create community, healing, and the voices they use in their work that represents their communities.

Meet the Presenter(s)

Desert Nights, Rising Stars Writers Conference Fellow 2019 Rashaad Thomas

Rashaad Thomas is a USAF Veteran, essayist, poet, and Voices of Our Nation’s Art Foundation (VONA/Voices) alum, who resides in South Phoenix, AZ. He is an Associate Editor for Hayden Ferry Review. He is also a contributor for the University of Arizona Poetry Center Blog and Thomas is the recipient of the 2016 City of Phoenix Mayor’s Art Award for Language Artist. He is a Spring 2017 MacDowell Colony Fellow and 2017 Hellen Ingram Plummer MacDowell Colony Fellow of the Year.