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Media Advisory.

Media Advisory

Poet Elizabeth Alexander to appear at the University of Minnesota

Who: Poet Elizabeth Alexander What: Eighth Annual NOMMO African American Authors Series
When: Wednesday, February 8, 2012 at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Cowles Auditorium, Hubert H. Humphrey Center, University of Minnesota West Bank campus, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis
Tickets: $15. Complimentary tickets available to U of M students and Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Call 612-624-2345 or visit

Contacts: Marlo Welshons, University of Minnesota Libraries,, (612) 625-9148
Kristin Anderson, University News Service,, (612) 624-1690

February 1, 2012

Best known for composing and delivering President Barack Obama's inaugural poem "Praise Song for the Day," poet, essayist, playwright and teacher Elizabeth Alexander will read from and discuss her work on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2012 at 7 p.m. in Cowles Auditorium, Hubert H. Humphrey Center, 301 19th Ave. South, Minneapolis, on the University’s West Bank.

Alexander is appearing as part of the eighth annual NOMMO African American Authors Series, co-sponsored by the Givens Foundation for African American Literature and the Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries and hosted by Alexs Pate, U of M professor and author of the novel "Amistad."

Alexander has published five books of poems, including "American Sublime," which was listed on the American Library Association's 2006 "Notable Books of the Year" and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize that same year. Her first young adult collection (co-written with Marilyn Nelson), "Miss Crandall's School for Young Ladies and Little Misses of Color," received the 2008 Connecticut Book Award. Her two collections of essays are "The Black Interior" and "Power and Possibility," and her play "Diva Studies" was produced at the Yale School of Drama. She has also composed words for musical projects with composers Elana Ruehr and Lewis Spratlan.

More about the NOMMO African American Authors Series
Presented annually since 2004 by the Givens Foundation for African American Literature (, the series provides rare opportunities to publicly define the state of the art of African American literature and to locate the work and contributions of national as well as Twin Cities African American writers within the present authoring of our literary tradition.

A Dogon word meaning "the magic power of the word," NOMMO has been co-sponsored since 2007 by the Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries ( This activity is made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the state's general fund and its arts and cultural heritage fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008. Additional sponsors include the University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach/Engagement Center ( and the Minnesota Humanities Center (

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