Friday, 27 July 2012

Iowa Creative Writing Fellows dating Zimbabwe

Creative exchanges are a vital tool of artistic and writing development. Of late Zimbabwe have been recieveing a lot of enthusiats in areas of arts mostkly in visual arts and music .Reggae musicians like Sizzla Kalonje have been in the country for a long time.Film and Visual arts experts also played their part in sharing their creative expertise to Zimbabweans in the feild. In 2009  and 2011 Poetry descended in Zimbabwe with poets of note  in the likes of Dj Dema from Botswana, Kwame Dawes [Ghana/Jamaica],Lebo Mashile from South Africa and many other prolific and  well recognized african Poets and wordsmith.

August 2012 is  a turn of events in creativing writing  industry . Proffesors of the art of writing are gracing Zimbabwe in both Harare and Masvingo  they will hold workshops ,seminars and poetry recitals  with journalists ,writers , poets and other stakeholders at the Zimbabwe international Book Fair and the Youth Cultural festival in Masvingo.

Some  of the notable voices coming into country Kelly Bieden ,the program officer of Iowa University Writers Program,Christopher Merill  Director of the Iowa Writers Program.

The team also include Camile Dungy and Ellen Dore Watson,
Jason Merritt/Getty Images North America
Camille Dungy is author of Smith Blue (Southern Illinois University Press, 2011), winner of the 2010 Crab Orchard Open Book Prize, Suck on the Marrow (Red Hen Press, 2010), and What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison (Red Hen Press, 2006).
Dungy is editor of Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry (UGA, 2009), co-editor of From the Fishouse: An Anthology of Poems that Sing, Rhyme, Resound, Syncopate, Alliterate, and Just Plain Sound Great (Persea, 2009), and assistant editor of Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade (University of Michigan Press, 2006). Dungy has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Cave Canem, the Dana Award, and Bread Loaf.
She is a two-time recipient of the Northern California Book Award (2010 and 2011), a Silver Medal Winner in the California Book Award (2011), and a two-time NAACP Image Award nominee (2010 and 2011). She was a2011 finalist for the Balcones Prize, and her books have been shortlisted for the 2011 Foreword Magazine Book of the Year Award, the PEN Center USA 2007 Literary Award, and the Library of Virginia 2007 Literary Award. Dungy is currently a Professor in the Creative Writing Department at San Francisco State University. Her poems and essays have been published widely in anthologies and print and online journals.

Ellen Doré Watson was hailed by Library Journal as one of "24 Poets for the 21st Century." Director of at Smith since 1999, Watson balances edgy tempos and sassy rhythms in poems as likely to address a rat on the path as to celebrate a peach or meditate on a truckload of guns. Former U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky wrote of her first book, We Live in Bodies: "Ellen Watson is an eloquent, passionate poet,” and Ruth Stone praises her “tough, ingenious lyricism.”
In her most recent volume, Dogged Hearts (Tupelo Press 2010), Watson lends her voice to a multiplicity of characters, each with his or her own dilemma, distraction, or disarray. “The poems are wild, delirious—they go every which way,” writes Gerald Stern. Earlier books include Broken Railings (winner of the Green Lake Chapbook Prize from Owl Creek Press), We Live in Bodies and, winner of the New York/New England Award, Ladder Music (fromAlice James Books, 1997 and 2001, respectively), and This Sharpening (Tupelo Press, 2006). Her journal appearances include American Poetry Review, Tin House, Orion, Field, Ploughshares, and The New Yorker.
Watson’s honors include a Massachusetts Cultural Council Artists Grant, a Rona Jaffe Writers Award, a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, the Zoland Poetry Fellowship to Vermont Studio Center, and National Endowment Translation Fellowship. She has translated a dozen books from the Brazilian Portuguese, including The Alphabet in the Park, the selected poems of Brazilian Adélia Prado (Wesleyan University Press), and she has also co-translated contemporary Palestinian poetry from the Arabic with Saadi Simawe, most notably in the volume Iraqi Poetry Today (Zephyr Press).
In addition to creative writing at Smith, Watson’s teaching includes the Colrain Manuscript Conference (core faculty), the Drew University Low-Residency MFA program in Poetry and Translation, and a generative writing workshop in Northampton. She also serves as Poetry and Translation editor of The Massachusetts Review.

This cultural exchange is organized by  the United States Embassy Public Affairs-Culture and Exchange team in Zimbabwe in conjuction with the IOWA University Writers Program ,United States from the 30th  of july to the 8th of August 2012.

by Mbizo Chirasha, Perfomances poet,blogwriter,writer and Creative Projects Specialist

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