Hailed as “simply magnificent” (The Washington Post), The Love Songs of W. E. B. Du Bois by acclaimed poet Honorée Fanonne Jeffers is a multigenerational epic told through the modern lens of Ailey Pearl Garfield, a brilliant, compelling, and complicated young woman.
Ailey bears the names of two formidable Black Americans—the revered choreographer Alvin Ailey and her great grandmother, the descendant of enslaved Georgians and tenant farmers. As she attempts to carve out her own identity, she is faced with unraveling the complex history of her family, spanning from the colonial slave trade and the removal of Indigenous peoples, through the Civil War, to the present day. Love Songs is a love letter to Black women interwoven with a formidable chronicle of African American history. Jeffers is the author of five critically acclaimed books of poetry. The Age of Phillis, her most recent collection, won the 2021 NAACP Image Award for Literary Work and was longlisted for the 2020 National Book Award in Poetry.
Tuesday, October 5, 7 p.m. CDT; Recording available through October 19