Facundo Bernal’s Poems Spotlight Early Chicano Life in L.A. Long Before Border Walls

By Alex Espinoza
FROM: L.A. Times

la-1553218495-skqvu0dmdl-snap-image.jpegAs the president issues the first veto of his tenure after Congress rejected his declaration of a national emergency to fund his wall, it’s hard to imagine that the dynamics along the U.S.-Mexico border were once different, when people shuttled back and forth between the two nations. Facundo Bernal marks such a moment in “Palos de Ciego,” his manuscript of poetry translated to English for the first time by Anthony Seidman as “A Stab in the Dark” for the Los Angeles Review of Books.

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Watts Poetic

In 1967, the Watts Prophets arose from the ashes of the Riots to offer a voice for the voiceless. Over a half-century later, Amde Hamilton is still creating change.

By Sam Ribakoff
FROM: TheLAnd

WattsThere used to be a lot more trees on this stretch of 103rd Street, but most of them were cut down so police helicopters could watch Watts’ residents from the sky. Amde Hamilton, 78 years old, still moves down these streets that he grew up on with a glide you can imagine him having in the late ‘60s, when he formed the Watts Prophets with Otis O’Solomon and Richard Dedeaux.

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Voices From Leimert Park and Voices From Leimert Park Redux

By Brian Dunlap

downloadNOTE: This is the third book in Los Angeles Literature’s Black History Month series highlighting the L.A. literature written by black authors.

There are two poetry anthologies that capture the black literary talent from the headquarters of black creativity in Los Ángeles, The World Stage in Leimert Park. The anthologies, Voices from Leimert Park and Voices from Leimert Park Redux, were published 11 years apart in 2006 and in 2017. They both capture the stories, ideas and perspectives of black Los Ángeles and beyond in a myriad of poetic forms and angles.

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In The Not Quite Dark

By Brian Dunlap

31179356NOTE: This is the second book in Los Angeles Literature’s Black History Month series highlighting the L.A. literature written by black authors.

The story collection In The Not Quite Dark by Los Ángeles native Dana Johnson is about race, specifically blackness, gentrification, love and class in L.A. Many of these stories take place downtown and weave the city’s history into their narratives.

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If He Hollers Let Him Go

By Brian Dunlap

downloadNOTE: In honor of Black History Month, Los Angeles Literature is highlighting the city’s literature written by black writers. They have all left an indelible mark on the city of Angels. In the first installment, Los Angeles Literature is highlighting If He Hollers Let Him Go by Chester Himes.

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Literary History: Playwright Wakako Yamauchi, Remembered For ‘And the Soul Shall Dance’

By Rafu Shimpo
From: Rafu Shimpo

Los Angeles Literature Note: This obituary of Wakako Yamauchi was published in August in L.A.’s Japanese newspaper Rafu Shimpo. Yamauchi was an important writer in the Nisei Literary community and beyond, especially in Los Ángeles, breaking out after WW II and Japanese internment. Related to the article published earlier this month titled “Literary History: Los Ángeles’ Nisei Literary Community Before WWII.”

wakako-207x300@2xGARDENA — Wakako Yamauchi, a renowned Nisei writer best known for her play “And the Soul Shall Dance,” passed away on Aug. 16 at her home in Gardena. She was 93.

She is remembered for depicting the struggles of Japanese immigrants and their children during the Great Depression and World War II, which she personally experienced.

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Literary History: Los Ángeles’ Nisei Literary Community Before WWII

By Brian Dunlap

download (1)On the night of October 7, 1934, in Los Ángeles, “11 Nisei writers and poets, seven women and four men,” gathered to discuss the creation of a literary organization for second generation Japanese Americans. Prolific columnist and poet Mary Oyama said, “for the first time ever, creative Nesei writers sat down together at one table.”

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