Welcome to Furious Flower
In “Second Sermon on the Warpland,” Pulitzer-Prize winner and former U.S. Poet Laureate Gwendolyn Brooks writes,
cracks into furious flower. Lifts its face
all unashamed. And sways in wicked grace.
Taking its name from these lines in Brooks’ poem and dedicated to her literary legacy, Furious Flower is the nation’s only academic center devoted to African American poetry. We serve James Madison University, our local Harrisonburg community, and scholars everywhere with education, research, and publishing.
Coming in spring 2016: Furious Flower Collegiate Summit
Poetry as a Means of Reflection and Engagement
Kwame Alexander | Mahogany Browne | Meg Medina | Tony Medina
March 3-5, 2016 Furious Flower presents a creative writing conference designed to help college undergraduates reach a young adult (YA) readership. More generally, it will help students see how writing can become an instrument for activism with audiences of all ages. With workshops taught by leading poets, novelists, and authors of books for kids, students will address themes of writing about controversial subjects with young readers in mind, the music of poetry, and how to use powerful but accessible language to reach a diverse audience.
Live performances: Amiri Baraka reads at Furious Flower in 1994 and 2004
Amiri Baraka performs two poems in his signature musical style, taking political topics head on: I AM (1994) and SOMEBODY BLEW UP AMERICA ... Read More >
The Strength of Jayne Cortez
In 2006, Cortez performed at James Madison University with The Firespitters at the invitation of the Furious Flower Poetry Center. While her ... Read More >
A broken epic for the black community: Interview with Dwayne Betts
In this interview with Elizabeth Hoover, R. Dwayne Betts discusses his education as a poet, his stance on form, and the differences between ... Read More >