Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Poets on Craft: Interrogating Legacies of Slavery

November 3, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Kiki Petrosino (White Blood: A Lyric of Virginia) and Lauren Russell (Descent) discuss their process of writing about family histories, legacies of slavery, and archival research methods. Imani Davis moderates. 

Presented in partnership with Royall House and Slave Quarters.

This event is virtual. Click here to register.

​​Lauren Russell is the author of Descent (Tarpaulin Sky Press, 2020), winner of the Poetry Society of America’s 2021 Anna Rabinowitz Award, and What’s Hanging on the Hush (Ahsahta Press, 2017). She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Cave Canem, and the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, as well as residencies from the Rose O’Neill Literary House at Washington College, the Millay Colony for the Arts, and City of Asylum/Passa Porta. Her work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day, The Brooklyn Rail, DIAGRAM, and the anthology Furious Flower: Seeding the Future of African American Poetry, among others. She was assistant director of the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics at the University of Pittsburgh from 2016 to 2020. In the fall of 2020, she joined the faculty of Michigan State University as an assistant professor in the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities and director of the RCAH Center for Poetry at MSU.

Description: Brown-skinned woman gazing at the camera, with red-framed glasses, red blouse, and silver-and-black curls cascading past her shoulders


Kiki Petrosino is the author of White Blood: a Lyric of Virginia (2020) and three other poetry books. She holds graduate degrees from the University of Chicago and the University of Iowa Writer’s Workshop. Her poems and essays have appeared in Prairie Schooner, Best American Poetry, The Nation, The New York Times, FENCE, Gulf Coast, jubilat, Tin House, and on-line at Ploughshares. She directs the Creative Writing Program at the University of Virginia, where she is a Professor of Poetry. Petrosino is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize, a Fellowship in Creative Writing from the National Endowment for the Arts, an Al Smith Fellowship Award from the Kentucky Arts Council, and the UNT Rilke Prize.

Description: Portrait of Kiki Petrosino with curly dark hair, green shirt and pearl necklace


Imani Davis is a queer Black writer from Brooklyn. They’ve earned fellowships from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Lambda Literary, BOAAT Press, and the Stadler Center for Poetry at Bucknell University. Imani’s poetry appears with Best New Poets 2020, Best of the Net 2018, PBS News Hour’s Brief But Spectacular Series, Poetry Daily, The Rumpus, Frontier Poetry, Brooklyn Poets, Shade Literary Arts, The Offing, and elsewhere. Imani’s research centers Black sapphic poetics in the United States. They completed their B.A. in English and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and they’re currently pursuing a Ph.D. in American Studies at Harvard. For more, visit imani-davis.com.

Description: A Black non-binary person with dreadlocks, lip gloss, pearls, and a sleeveless linen jumpsuit looking forward. Behind them is a white background with a single Black line painted on the wall.