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The Kinsey Collection Features the Work of Phillis Wheatley

By Harriet Staff


The My Brown Baby blog reports that people in select cities will soon have a chance to view Phillis Wheatley‘s work up close and personal:

The folks at Wells Fargo chose the talented and adorable Jordin Sparks to help them publicize the incredible treasure trove of African American history that’s been gathered over the years by Bernard and Shirley Kinsey in what is now internationally known as The Kinsey Collection—what the remarkable couple call their “35-year life of collecting the African American experience and culture.” The Kinsey Collection is touring the country this summer in an exhibit sponsored by Wells Fargo to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. (At the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Art + Culture in Charlotte, North Carolina from June 27–September 14 and at Baltimore’s Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture from November 1–January 10, 2014.)

The Kinsey’s collection includes a book of poetry published in 1773 by the incredible Wheatley, the first published African-American poet and the first published African-American woman, whose talent and bravery 240 years ago should stop us in our tracks in 2013. Widely regarded as the founding figure of black literature, Wheatley actually had to endure the indignity of an “inspection” by a crew of Boston elites, including founding father John Hancock, who doubted that a slave girl could actually write such stellar works of poetry. But she endured it all and kept writing.

Get out to see her work and the work of other American icons if you can!

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Posted in Poetry News on Friday, July 19th, 2013 by Harriet Staff.