In the words of Maya Angelou, “This world is a better place because of Sonia Sanchez: more livable, more laughable, more manageable. I wish millions of people knew that some of the joy in their lives comes from the fact that Sonia Sanchez is writing poetry.”
Sanchez, an internationally renowned presenter on issues of black culture, women’s liberation, peace, and racial justice, will speak at 7 p.m. March 23 in the Benes Rooms of Ohio Wesleyan University’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., Delaware. Her presentation, rescheduled from last spring, is free and open to the public.
Sanchez will sign books, which will be available for purchase at the event, following the reading. She has written more than 16 books, including “Like the Singing Coming off the Drums: Love Poems,” “Shake Loose My Skin,” “Homegirls and Handgrenades,” and, most recently, “Morning Haiku.” Her poetry also appeared in the movie “Love Jones.” With Sanchez at the book signing will be 1975 Ohio Wesleyan alumna Jacqueline Wood, Ph.D., who has co-authored and edited books with Sanchez.
Immediately prior to Sanchez’s visit, Ohio Wesleyan will screen the 2015 documentary “BaddDDD Sonia Sanchez,” which producers say offers “unprecedented access to the life, work, and mesmerizing performances of [the] renowned poet and activist.” The free screening will be held at 5:15 p.m. March 23, also in the Benes Rooms.
In addition to her poetry, Sanchez is a contributing editor to both Black Scholar and The Journal of African Studies, and she has edited an anthology, “We Be Word Sorcerers: 25 Stories by Black Americans.”
Sanchez’s honors include earning a National Endowment for the Arts Award, a Community Service Award from the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, an American Book Award, a Peace and Freedom Award from the Women International League for Peace and Freedom, a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, a Langston Hughes Poetry Award, a Robert Frost Medal from the Poetry Society of America, a Harper Lee Award, and a National Visionary Leadership Award.
She has lectured at more than 500 universities and colleges in the United States.
Sanchez’s Ohio Wesleyan visit is sponsored by Sisters United, the Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs, the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, and the Office of Alumni Relations. The documentary screening is sponsored Sisters United and by the President’s Commission on Cultural and Racial Diversity.
Learn more about Sanchez and her work at www.soniasanchez.net.