Reading and Conversation with U.S. Poet Laureate in Conversation with UC Berkeley Professor Beth Piatote

Wednesday, April 22, 2020
5:30-7 p.m. PDT
This event will be online. Register for the livestream here. 

During this time of crisis, poetry is more vital than ever. Join us online on April 22 for an evening of reading and conversation with Joy Harjo, the 23rd U.S. Poet Laureate, as she responds to ARC’s Poetry & the Senses theme of “emergency” on Earth Day 2020. 

Joy is the first Native American to hold the U.S. Poet Laureate position. Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Joy Harjo is an internationally known award-winning poet, writer, performer, and saxophone player of the Mvskoke/Creek Nation. She will be in conversation with Beth Piatote, writer and associate professor of Native American Studies at UC Berkeley. This reading is free and open to the public and available live captioned and live streamed.


Joy Harjo’s nine books of poetry include An American Sunrise, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings, How We Became Human: New and Selected Poems, and She Had Some Horses. Harjo’s memoir Crazy Brave won several awards, including the PEN USA Literary Award for Creative Non-Fiction and the American Book Award. She is the recipient of the Ruth Lilly Prize from the Poetry Foundation for Lifetime Achievement, the 2015 Wallace Stevens Award from the Academy of American Poets for proven mastery in the art of poetry, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the United States Artist Fellowship. In 2014 she was inducted into the Oklahoma Writers Hall of Fame. 

A renowned musician, Harjo performs with her saxophone nationally and internationally, solo and with her band, the Arrow Dynamics. She has five award-winning CDs of music including the award-winning album Red Dreams, A Trail Beyond Tears and Winding Through the Milky Way, which won a Native American Music Award for Best Female Artist of the Year in 2009. Harjo’s latest is a book of poetry from Norton, An American Sunrise. She lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Beth Piatote is author of two books: a mixed-genre collection, The Beadworkers: Stories and a scholarly monograph, Domestic Subjects: Gender, Citizenship, and Law in Native American Literature, as well as numerous essays and short stories stories in journals and anthologies. The Beadworkers has been long-listed for the Aspen Words Literary Prize and the PEN/Bingham Prize. She is currently associate professor of Native American Studies at UC Berkeley. She earned a Ph.D. from Stanford University.


This reading is co-sponsored by the Arts Research Center and Engaging the Senses Foundation, with additional support from the English and Ethnic Studies Departments, the Native American Studies Program, the Townsend Center for the Humanities, and the Center for Race & Gender.


Categories: April 2020, Events