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Robert Hayden/Dudley Randall Centennial celebrates National Poetry Month at Wayne State University April 2-3

March 24, 2014

Robert Hayden (1913-80) and Dudley Randall (1914-2000) are two of Wayne State University's most famous alumni. Through their poetry, they brought attention to the city of Detroit and the accomplishments of African American culture and history. In recognition of National Poetry Month, WSU will honor the Robert Hayden/Dudley Randall Centennial with several on-campus events April 2 and 3.

A symposium will be held from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 2 at the WSU Law School's Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights, featuring roundtable discussions about the poets and their work. Film clips and conversations about The Black Unicorn: Dudley Randall and the Broadside Press and a preview of Austere and Lonely Offices: The Poetry of Robert Hayden will be shown.

A stellar lineup of poets and scholars will discuss the works and impact of Robert Hayden and Dudley Randall on their own work and on American literature. Al Young, Melba Joyce Boyd, Frank Rashid, Todd Duncan, Laurence Goldstein, Frederick Glaysher, Tony Medina, Kevin Gaines, Terry Blackhawk, Bill Harris and jessica Care moore will each present their perspectives on the poets and engage in a roundtable discussion during the symposium.

A poetry reading will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. Thursday, April 3 in the David Adamany Undergraduate Library's Bernath Auditorium. Poets Naomi Long Madgett, Adrian Matejka, Caroline Maun, and M.L. Liebler will join the previous day's panelists to recite poems and comment on personal and aesthetic connections to Hayden and Randall. Jazz bassist Marion Hayden will accompany Young and Boyd, the Magic Poetry Band will perform with Liebler, and students from the InsideOut Literary Arts Project will perform as part of this celebration.

Both events are free and open to the public, with receptions following each day's activities. For more information, call 313-577-2321 or visit http://clasweb.clas.wayne.edu/haydenrandall100.

Cosponsors for the centennial celebration include: WSU's Departments of Africana Studies, English, History, Urban Studies and Urban Planning, and Labor Studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights in the WSU Law School; WSU Libraries; WSU's Humanities Center; the King Chavez Parks Fund in the Office of the Graduate School; the WSU Academy of Scholars; WSU's Office of the Vice President of Government and Community Affairs; Marygrove College's Department of English and Modern Languages; and the Institute for Detroit Studies.

  • Contact: Tom Reynolds
  • Voice: (313) 577-8093
  • Email: treynolds@wayne.edu
  • Fax: (313) 577-4459
  • Website: www.media.wayne.edu
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Phone (313) 577-2150 * Fax (313) 577-4459 * Newsline (313) 577-5345