Langston Hughes National Poetry Project papers
This collection of records is from the Langston Hughes National Poetry Project, organized by Doctors Maryemma Graham and Doretha Williams of the University of Kansas' Department of English, Dr. Graham also creating and founding the History of Black Writing Project under which this grant-funded project took place. The Langston Hughes National Poetry Project recruited a variety of institutions, organizations, and individuals to become a part of a national effort to extend the legacy of Langston Hughes. This project held a symposium on the University of Kansas' campus in 2002 and facillitated poetry circles and events across the United States from August 2003 to August 2005.
- November 1, 2002-December 5, 2005
- Graham, Maryemma (Compiler, Person)
Conditions Governing Access
No access restrictions.
Conditions Governing Use
Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.
History of the Project on the History of Black Writing
The Project on the History of Black Writing was founded by Dr. Maryemma Graham in 1983 at the University of Mississippi-Oxford as the Afro-American Novel Project. It was organized to compile a comprehensive bibliography of largely neglected and out-of-print novels published by African American authors and to provide a study guide for both teachers and students to facilitate the use of African American texts in the classroom. This guide first appeared in 1986 and was revised later.
The project moved to Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts in 1989, becoming affiliated with the W.E.B. DuBois Institute at Harvard University and operating under a three-year grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. At this point it also was renamed to become the Project on the History of Black Writing (HBW).
In 1996 the HBW became affiliated with the Smithsonian Museum of American History and developed a prototype electronic version of the full texts of works collected by the HBW.
In 1998 the project moved to the University of Kansas in Lawrence, where it has remained since. Projects have included the 2002 national conference on the centennial of Langston Hughes' birth, held at the KU campus, and poetry circles held around the country in which groups met to discuss the life and works of Hughes.
The Project on the History of Black Writing continues to be committed to recovering fugitive texts written by African Americans, providing innovative scholarship in the fields of book history and digital humanities, providing public literacy programming, and professional development and transforming curriculum.
Biography of Langston Hughes
James Mercer Langston Hughes was born on February 1, 1902 and passed away on May 22, 1967. He was an American poet, social activist, novelist, playwright, and columnist from Joplin, Missouri who spent several years as a child living with his grandmother in Lawrence, Kansas. One of the earliest innovators of the then-new literary art form called jazz poetry, Hughes is best known as a leader of the Harlem Renaissance in New York City.
The Langston Hughes National Poetry Project, funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, was organized by Doctor Maryemma Graham and Doctor Doretha Williams of the University of Kansas English Department on the centennial of Hughes' birth to celebrate the life and works of Langston Hughes and expand coversations about Langston's works and African-American literature.
The project recruited public libraries, cultural centers, writers' groups, educational institutions, bookstores, corporate offices, housing developments, and churches as well as internationally recognized poets and scholars, to become a part of a national effort to extend the legacy of Langston Hughes. A major component of the project was a national conference on Langston Hughes that took place on the University of Kansas campus in 2002.
2 Linear Feet (2 boxes + 1 DVD)
Scope and Contents
The bulk of the collection consists of records related to a three-day symposium held at the University of Kansas in 2002 celebrating the centennial of Langston Hughes' birth, as well as poetry circles organized around the United States to expand and extend Hughes' legacy. These records include the National Endowment for the Humanities grant application and related documentation, correspondence, planning documents, information about and for poetry circle facilitators, poetry circle evaluations, news articles, and information regarding other events and projects surrounding Langston Hughes. There is also a little information related to other projects in which the History of Black Writing project directors at the University of Kansas were involved; this material is organized at the end of the collection.
RH MS 1403
RH Video 55
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Transfer, Project on the History of Black Writing--University of Kansas English Department, 2013.
Black American Literature Forum. V. 17, no. 1 (spring 1981); v. 15, no. 3 (fall 1981); v. 16, no. 3 (fall 1982); v. 17, no. 1 (spring 1983)-v. 18, no. 1 (spring 1984); v. 18, no. 3 (fall 1984)-v. 19, no. 4 (winter 1985); v. 20, no. 4 (winter 1986); v. 21, no. 1/2 (spring/summer 1987)-v. 22, no. 4 (winter 1988); v. 23, no. 2 (summer 1989)-v. 23, no. 3 (fall 1989); v. 25, no. 1 (winter 1991). Terre Haute, In: School of Education, Indiana State University. Located at Spencer Research Library at RH Ser C1471.
Phati'tude: Literary Magazine. V. 6, no. 1 (spring 1975). New York, Ny: Intercultural Alliance of Artists & Scholars, Inc. Located at Kenneth Spencer Research Library at RH Ser D3247.
Phylon. V. 26, no. 4; v. 27, no. 1-v. 34, no. 4; v. 43, no 1-v. 45, no. 1; v. 45, no. 4-v. 46, no. 1; v. 46, no.4-v. 47, no. 3; v. 48, no. 1-2; v. 49, no 1/2. Atlanta, Ga.: Atlanta University. Located at Kenneth Spencer Research Library at RH Ser C1472.
Studies in Black Literature. V. 6, no. 1 (spring 1975). Fredericksburg, Va.: Department of English, Mary Washington College. Located at Kenneth Spencer Research Library at RH Ser D3246.
- Guide to the Project on the History of Black Writing Collection
- Langston Hughes National Poetry Project papers
- Finding aid prepared by cde. Finding aid encoded by cde.
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Finding aid written in English.
- Support for the processing of this Collection was provided by the Dana and Sue Anderson African American Collecting Program Endowment Fund.
- Finding aid permalink
- Preferred citation
Langston Hughes National Poetry Project papers, RH MS 1403, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas