Friday, October 21, 2016

Guante's New Book Is Available NOW

at the Twin Cities Book Festival
One part mixtape, one part disorientation guide, and one part career retrospective, this book brings together spoken word poems, song lyrics, and essays from the past decade of Guante’s work. From the exploration of toxic masculinity in "Ten Responses to the Phrase 'Man Up'," to the throwback humanist hip hop of "Matches," to a one-act play on the racial and cultural politics of Eminem, "A Love Song, A Death Rattle, A Battle Cry" is a practitioners eye-view of the intersections of hip hop, poetry, and social justice.

Read the full intro chapter, "Ten Things Everyone Should Know About Spoken Word and Slam Poetry," here.

Thanks to everyone who has already picked up a copy. If you haven't yet, here are easiest ways to get it:

1. Order it online through Button Poetry
Here's the link! They take credit card or PayPal.

2. Pick up a copy in Minneapolis at Fifth Element
If you don't want to order it online and can't make it to a show, stop into Fifth Element (2411 Hennepin Ave S. in Minneapolis) and grab a copy.

3. Come to a show and get one from me personally.
The next show is coming up Friday, November 4 at the UMN Whole Music Club, and it's free and open to all ages. This is our third year doing Page.Stage.Engage, and both of the previous installments have been completely packed. Tish and I will be joined by Asian-American spoken word collective Speakers of the Sun, members of the U of MN's SPEAK Poetry group, DJ Just Nine, and a special surprise guest or two. Hope to see you there (here's the Facebook event page).

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

On College Republicans, "Build the Wall," and Anti-Immigrant Bullying

image via Navigate MN
Very brief background for those who don't already know: at the University of MN, student orgs each get to paint a panel on a long wall to promote what they do. This year, the College Republicans' panel included the phrase "Build the Wall." This made a lot of people angry. Someone painted over the panel. Navigate MN, along with La Raza and others, organized a powerful open mic-style action that allowed student activists, multicultural Greek leaders, community members and others to share their stories and stand in solidarity with each other. La Raza and the Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence (along with the Gender and Sexuality Center and Women's Center) each held open forums/processing spaces for further conversation and strategizing. President Kaler released a statement expressing grave concern about, yeah, the vandalization of the panel (as opposed to what the panel actually said). Finally, the school's conservative alternative newspaper printed one of the most bizarre op-eds I've ever read in a conservative student paper (which is really saying something) comparing the vandalization of the panel to rape culture.

Mostly, I just wanted to use this space to link to the various organizations doing good work around these issues (links included below), but I'll share a couple of brief thoughts too: