Saturday, May 18, 2013

50 Poems about Slavery, Struggles for Freedom

I've been thinking and writing about poems focused on slavery, ex-slaves, and struggles for freedom for
some time now. What follows is a list of 50 poems that I've covered with students and friends over the last few years. Soon, I'll provide a list of volumes of poetry that highlight the same topic as well.

• "Peeling Off the Skin" by Opal Palmer Adisa
• "The Venus Hottentot" by Elizabeth Alexander
• "Nat Turner Dreams of Insurrection" by Elizabeth Alexander 
• "Harriet Tubman" by Samuel Allen
• "Nat Turner in the Clearing" by Alvin Aubert
• "Wise 1" by Amiri Baraka
• "Belov├Ęd" by Kamau Brathwaite
• "slaveship" by Lucille Clifton
• “Harriet" by Lucille Clifton
• "Harriet Tubman" by Sam Cornish
• "Frederick Douglass" by Sam Cornish
• "Slave Market" by Sam Cornish
• "A Dog Looking" by Sam Cornish
• "Frederick Douglass" by Paul Laurence Dunbar  
• "Douglass" by Paul Laurence Dunbar
• "Frederick Douglass Speaks before the Anti-Mexican War Abolitionists" by Vievee Francis
• "White Glove Test" by Vievee Francis
• "Drummer Boy" by Vievee Francis
• "Bury Me in a Free Land" by Frances E. W. Harper
• "The Slave Auction" by Frances E. W. Harper
• "The Slave Mother" by Frances E. W. Harper
• "The Dying Fugitive" by Frances E. W. Harper
• "Frederick Douglass" by Robert Hayden
• "Runagate Runagate" by Robert Hayden
• "Middle Passage" by Robert Hayden

• "The Ballad of Nat Turner" by Robert Hayden
• "O Daedalus, Fly Away Home" by Robert Hayden
• "Slavery" by George Moses Horton
• "The Slave" by George Moses Horton
• "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" By Langston Hughes 
• "Frederick Douglass: 1817-1895" by Langston Hughes
• "On Listening to the Spirituals" by Lance Jeffers
• "when I speak of blues be clear" by Tyehimba Jess  
• "thoughts on the matter of runaways"by Quraysh Ali Lansana
• "headprice" by Quraysh Ali Lansana
• "Phillis" by Naomi Long Madgett
• "Frederick Douglass and the Slave Breaker" by Dudley Randall
• "Flight to Canada" by Ishmael Reed
• "Douglass, a Last Letter" by Tim Seibles
• "From the Lost Letters of Frederick Douglass" by Evie Shockley 
• "(mis)takes one to know one" by Evie Shockley
• "bio / autobiography (or, 18th-century multiculturalism)" by Evie Shockley
• "Native Guard" by Natasha Trethewey
• "Nomenclature" by Frank X. Walker
• "Wind Talker" by Frank X. Walker
• "Role Call" by Frank X. Walker 
• "Ex-Slave" by Margaret Walker
• "Harriet Tubman" by Margaret Walker
• "On Being Brought From Africa to America" by Phillis Wheatley
• "Reward" By Kevin Young

Related:
Poetry, Slavery & Creativity
150+ Years of Antislavery Poems by Black Poets 
Ishmael Reed's Funny Ex-slave Poem
Evie Shockley and This Douglass Poetry Discourse 
Poetry Lists

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