From the Pyramids to the Projects...with Legendary 'Black Arts' Poet Askia M. Touré

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Askia M. Touré, award-winning poet, author, social activist, and African American Studies professor, is a fountain of fascinating oral history about the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), civil rights campaigns, the Black Panthers, and the evolution of 'Black Arts.' Along with Sonia Sanchez, Amiri Baraka, and other black writers, Touré helped shape the legacy of the 'Black Arts' Movement and profoundly changed how race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, politics, and art were and are understood.

A lifelong interest in the history of Africa inspired Touré to use his work to restore the lost heritage of African American people. Touré is featured in a host of anthologies, and authored five books, including From the Pyramids to the Projects, From the Projects to the Stars, winner of the 1989 American Book Award for Literature, and Dawnsong!, which received an award from the African-American Literature and Culture Society, an affiliate of the American Literature Association. Touré recently received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Pen Oakland.