June Jordan's Poetry for the People
A Revolutionary Blueprint
Her vision and politics have set her at the forefront of contemporary poetry and her work has a far-reaching impact on all poets and readers of poetry today. A dedicated and inspired teacher, her innovative and highly successful poetry program, Poetry for the People, has recently emerged as a national phenomenon.
June Jordan is Professor of African American Studies at the University of California at Berkeley. Her many books include Haruko/Love Poems, Technical Difficulties, and I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw The Sky. Lauren Muller is a graduate student in the English Department at the University of California at Berkeley. She has taught with June Jordan for four years.
"This celebration of "explorative" poetry as a communal, oral art form is an easy-to-use, timely reference for community college, public libraries and writers' centers." -- Library Journal
"June Jordan's Poetry for the People: A Revolutionary Blueprint does for would-be writers what The Anarchist's Cookbook did for the neophyte bomb-makers. This step-by-step guide . . . explains how to teach, write, critique, perform, advertise, and publish poetry. The book essentially dusts poetry off and puts it in hip, new '90s threads--and shows what a tremendous difference a good teacher can make." -- Washington City Paper
". . . a handbook that serves the interests of poetry and community. . . . may this good and useful book find its way into the hands of anyone who cares about poetry and its future." -- Oregonian
". . . documents the history of this unique workshop and reading collective of the University of California at Berkeley. . . . this freewheeling guidebook looks at poetry as a populist, highly diverse activity." -- Publishers Weekly
"Poetry does matter and does have relevence where it matters, in our homes and in our hearts. Jordan's manual is a step in the right direction towards restoring poetry to the altars of our personal lives. It matters more than ever, especially here and now." -- Joy Harjo
"This is a book of life: of energy, passion and hard, hands-on work in the name of poetry and of community. 'Without fear of being happy,' June Jordan, master poet-teacher, and her students offer this practical guide, inspiration and invitation to people and poets everywhere." -- Adrienne Rich
"How can students find a voice and the vulnerability and courage to proclaim it to the world we live in? Poetry for the People looks beyond canonized poets to find specific languages that speak to young Americans. Poetry for the People gives us guidelines for intelligent criticism and shows us how to rouse activist enthusiasm beyond the classroom." -- Allen Ginsberg
"This celebration of "explorative" poetry as a communal, oral art form is an easy-to-use, timely reference for community college, public libraries, and writers' centers." -- Library Journal