The Lives of the Most Eminent State Department Poets

JOHN CHEEVER, DENISE LEVERTOV, ELTON FAX, GORE VIDAL, AND N. SCOTT MOMADAY WILL ATTEND WRITERS’ CONFERENCE BY UNION OF BULGARIAN WRITERS, HOST AND ORGANIZER OF MEETING. WHILE CONFERENCE OBVIOUSLY HAS POLITICAL MOTIVES, WE BELIEVE THAT AMERICANS WHO PLAN TO ATTEND WILL EXPRESS TRADITIONAL AMERICAN VIEWS SUPPORTING HUMAN RIGHTS AND WILL SPEAK OUT ON ANY OTHER SUBJECTS WHICH INTEREST THEM.

ROBERT CREELEY IS RELAXED, EASY TO WORK WITH AND VERY PERSONABLE.

“The Lives of the Most Eminent State Department Poets” is composed of language we found in the WikiLeaks Public Library of US Diplomacy (PlusD) database, excerpted and lightly edited. PlusD is a collection of US diplomatic traffic from 1966 to 2010 (the majority of the documents are from 1973 to 1977 and from 2000 to 2010). We first searched for the word “poet” and subsequently for individual names. In this version, we include only US poets. They are sorted by date, moving forward in time.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS INTERVIEWED BY REPORTERS IN IVORY COAST AND GHANA AND SHE APPEARED ON NIGERIAN TELEVISION.

TEHRAN IS ANXIOUS TO PROGRAM CAROLYN KIZER.

NIKKI GIOVANNI DOES NOT REPEAT NOT OBJECT TO SOCIAL ACTIVITIES WHICH PROVIDE MEANINGFUL CONTACT WITH WRITERS, STUDENTS AND PROFESSORS. IN FACT, SHE ENJOYS AND EXCELS IN ACTIVITIES WHICH ALLOW IN-DEPTH DISCUSSIONS.

NIKKI GIOVANNI DOES OBJECT TO SCHEDULES WHICH SPREAD HER TOO THIN BY RUNNING FROM PLACE TO PLACE WITH INSUFFICIENT TIME FOR EFFECTIVE DIALOGUE.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS EXTREMELY COOPERATIVE AND COMPLETELY FLEXIBLE DURING HER VISITS IN JOHANNESBURG, DESPITE FACT THAT HEAVY PROGRAMMING ELSEWHERE HAD FATIGUED HER SOMEWHAT.

NIKKI GIOVANNI’S WARM OPEN PERSONALITY AND INFORMAL APPROACH WERE PERFECTLY TAILORED TO WHAT POST WANTED FROM HER.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS SUPERB IN INFORMAL DISCUSSIONS WITH WRITERS AND OTHER INTELLECTUALS AND MADE EXCELLENT IMPRESSION ON ALL WHO MET HER. POST BELIEVES RELATIONS WITH IMPORTANT SEGMENT SOUTH AFRICAN LITERARY COMMUNITY WERE SIGNIFICANTLY REINFORCED BY THIS VISIT.

NIKKI GIOVANNI’S STYLE WAS EXTREMELY INFORMAL AND INFECTIOUS.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS MOST COOPERATIVE THROUGHOUT HER NAIROBI VISIT.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS SNUBBED BY J. P. CLARK WHO, AT LAST MINUTE (FOR REASONS NOT YET DISCLOSED). CANCELLED HIS RECEPTION HER HONOR.

NIKKI GIOVANNI’S GOVT EXCESS BAGGAGE TICKET HAS BEEN LOST IN NAIROBI EITHER BY AIRLINES OR BY GIOVANNI HERSELF. ALL POSSIBLE SOURCES HAVE BEEN CHECKED AND TICKET HAS NOT REPEAT NOT BEEN FOUND.

NIKKI GIOVANNI’S EXHAUSTING OVERALL TRAVEL AND ACTIVITY SCHEDULE COMPOUNDED BY COLD IN MIND, WE WISH TO ASSURE HER THAT SCHEDULED ACTIVITIES IN MOST CASES WILL REQUIRE AT BEST ONE HOUR OF HER TIME, EXCEPT AS OTHERWISE NOTED.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS SUFFERING FROM END-OF-TOUR FATIGUE AND SIX WEEK OLD COLD.

NIKKI GIOVANNI PERFORMED AND INTERACTED WITH WARMTH, CHARM, AND SINCERITY.

NIKKI GIOVANNI WAS, EXCEPT FOR ONE APPOINTMENT, FAIRLY PUNCTUAL.

James Dickey is interested in visiting the USSR but as of yet has not been able to find the time.

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DANIEL HOFFMAN CALLED US TODAY TO SAY THAT HE HAS DECIDED AGAINST PARTICIPATION IN ANY CULTURAL PROGRAM IN SOVIET UNION UNDER PRESENT CIRCUMSTANCES AND WILL THEREFORE NOT REPEAT NOT GO TO MOSCOW IN FEBRUARY.

DANIEL HOFFMAN ADMITTED THAT CANCELLATION OF HIS PLANNED PROGRAM IN GERMANY CONTRIBUTED TO DECISION; HE GAVE AS MAIN REASON HIS DESIRE TO AVOID ANY APPEARANCE OF “BUSINESS-AS-USUAL” WITH SOVIET GOVERNMENT DURING ACUTE PHASE OF SOLZHENITSYN EPISODE.

REED WHITTEMORE’S PRESENCE HERE NOW UNDER USG AUSPICES COULD BE CONSTRUED AS DESIRE ON OUR PART TO ACTIVELY PURSUE EXPANDED RELATIONS WITH SOVIET UNION’S OFFICIAL LITERARY ESTABLISHMENT AT TIME WHEN A SOVIET CITIZEN IS BEING HARSHLY PUNISHED FOR HIS LITERARY ACTIVITIES.

JAMES DICKEY IS INTERESTED IN VISITING THE USSR BUT AS OF YET HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO FIND THE TIME.

WILL N. SCOTT MOMADAY COME WITH WIFE AS EARLIER STATED OR UNACCOMPANIED ACCORDING TO REFTEL? IS DYRDEN ACCOMPANIED ONLY BY WIFE AS STATED IN REFTEL OR BY WIFE AND TWO CHILDREN AS STATED EARLIER? EMBASSY URGENTLY NEEDS ACCURATE INFORMATION ON ARRIVAL TIMES AND NUMBER OF ACCOMPANYING DEPENDENTS EACH LECTURER TO AVOID FURTHER EMBARRASSMENT AND INCONVENIENCE TO LECTURERS.

SCOTT MOMADAY SCHEDULED ARRIVE MOSCOW, UNACCOMPANIED, FEBRUARY 4 VIA SU 316 FROM PARIS.

SCOTT MOMADAY WHO IS SINGLE HAS LARGER-THAN-USUAL TWO-ROOM BLOCKS IN UNIVERSITY. SOVIETS HAVE PROVIDED NEW FURNITURE, TV, TELEPHONES AND CONSIDERABLE HOSPITALITY. CLASSES ARE GOING WELL WITH GOOD ATTENDANCE BY UNDERGRADUATES, GRADUATES, AND FACULTY. LECTURERS HAVE BEEN DRAWN INTO UNIVERSITY SOCIAL LIFE TO SOME EXTENT AND INVITED TO FACULTY MEETINGS. LBE EXPECT FAIRLY WIDESPREAD PROFESSIONAL CONTACTS TO DEVELOP OUTSIDE UNIVERSITY.

SCOTT MOMADAY COMPLETES MOSCOW TEACHING ASSIGNMENT MAY 20. AFTER THAT HE IS HAPPY TO ACCEPT OFFER FROM OSLO.

DIANE WAKOSKI ALSO ACTIVE IN WOMEN’S MOVEMENT AND MAY BE ABLE TO DISCUSS INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S YEAR IN AN INFORMAL MILIEU.

WILLIAM SMITH’S MAJOR POINT IN ALL HIS TALKS WITH APPROACH VARYING ACCORDING TO SIZE AND SETTING OF AUDIENCE WAS THAT BLUE-COLLAR LITERATURE IS A NEW AND IMPORTANT TREND IN AMERICAN LITERATURE.

WILLIAM SMITH DEFINED BLUE-COLLAR LITERATURE AS LITERATURE WRITTEN BY BLUE-COLLAR WORKERS ABOUT THEIR WORK AND THEMSELVES. THIS DIFFERENT HE NOTED FROM PROFESSIONAL WRITERS SUCH AS JOHN STEINBECK WHO WRITES ABOUT WORKERS BUT IS NOT ONE HIMSELF.

WILLIAM SMITH SAID ADVANTAGE OF BLUE-COLLAR LITERATURE IS THAT WORKER SPEAKS FROM SUPERIOR VANTAGE POINT AND WRITES WITH MORE SENSITIVITY ABOUT HIMSELF AND RELATION TO HIS WORK.

WILLIAM SMITH READ EXCERPTS FROM REPORT FROM ENGINE COMPANY 82 AND HIS FORTHCOMING NOVEL THE LAST FIRE, ON HIGH STEEL BY MICHAEL CHERRY, AND REFERRED TO THE NEW CENTURIONS AND THE BLUE KNIGHT BY JOSEPH WAMBAUGH.

JOHN CHEEVER, DENISE LEVERTOV, ELTON FAX, GORE VIDAL, AND N. SCOTT MOMADAY WILL ATTEND WRITERS’ CONFERENCE BY UNION OF BULGARIAN WRITERS, HOST AND ORGANIZER OF MEETING. WHILE CONFERENCE OBVIOUSLY HAS POLITICAL MOTIVES, WE BELIEVE THAT AMERICANS WHO PLAN TO ATTEND WILL EXPRESS TRADITIONAL AMERICAN VIEWS SUPPORTING HUMAN RIGHTS AND WILL SPEAK OUT ON ANY OTHER SUBJECTS WHICH INTEREST THEM.

SCOTT MOMADAY TRAVELLED TO TASHKENT AND OTHER CITIES IN CENTRAL ASIAN PARTS OF SOVIET UNION. U.S. LECTURER OPPORTUNITIES FOR PROFESSIONAL TRAVEL HAVE BEEN MIXED. ALL OF LAST YEAR’S GROUP WERE SENT ON TRIPS BY SPONSORING UNIVERSITY. ON OTHER HAND MOSCOW STATE UNIVERSITY HAS NOTIFIED THIS YEAR’S GROUP THAT THERE WILL BE NO SIMILAR TRIPS THIS YEAR. NO REASON WAS GIVEN.

REED WHITTEMORE SPEAKS DEROGATIVELY OF HIS VISIT TO LENINGRAD, STATING THAT HE QUOTE MADE NOT ONE FRIEND THERE, UNQUOTE.

CLARENCE MAJOR, LIKE MOST DELEGATES FROM OTHER COUNTRIES, PLAYED RELATIVELY MINOR ROLE IN FESTIVAL.

ROBERT CREELEY IS ACCEPTABLE FROM WEEK TO TEN DAYS AFTER NEW ZEALAND TOUR. HOWEVER, WE ACCEPT WITH SOME RELUCTANCE BASED ON OUR EXPERIENCE WITH THOMAS FITZSIMMONS AND OTHER NON-FAMOUS NAME POETS OR WRITERS.

JAMES EMANUEL SHIPPED HIS EFFECTS AIR FREIGHT AT HIS OWN EXPENSE IN ORDER TO HAVE THEM IN TIME FOR THE FALL SEMESTER. REQUEST PERMISSION TO PAY DOLLARS $250.24 TO REIMBURSE PROFESSOR EMANUEL FOR AIR SHIPMENT OF 163 POUNDS FROM NEW YORK TO WARSAW.

JAMES EMANUEL HAS LEFT WARSAW AND IS TRAVELING IN EUROPE WITH NO FIXED ADDRESS.

JAMES EMANUEL’S LECTURE TOPICS FOR MARCH 8TH AND 9TH LIBRARY APPEARANCES WILL BE POET READING AND DISCUSSING “POETRY OF BLACK WRITERS IN AMERICA” FOR MARCH 8 AND “READING AND DISCUSSION OF HIS OWN WORKS” FOR MARCH 9. AUDIENCES LIKELY TO INCLUDE STUDENTS, WRITERS AND GENERAL PUBLIC.

JAMES EMANUEL SHOULD ASSUME LITTLE KNOWLEDGE ON THE PART OF THE AUDIENCE OF BLACK WRITERS’ CONTRIBUTION TO AMERICAN LITERATURE.

JAMES EMANUEL REIMBURSEMENT FROM EMBASSY AUTHORIZED FOR NEW YORK/WARSAW PORTION OF TICKET IN DOLLARS. CHARGE 1069-524177-B REPEAT 1069-524177-B NOT TO EXCEED DOLS 473. EMBASSY AUTHORIZED TO PURCHASE RETURN PORTION OF TICKET IN ZLOTYS.

THOMAS FITZSIMMONS VISIT FIJI CANCELLED AS ANNOUNCED IN REF A AND CONFIRMED IN REF B. OUR CO-SPONSOR AT UNIVERSITY OF THE SOUTH PACIFIC, EXPRESSED DISAPPOINTMENT AT THE NEWS. IN VIEW OF FACT THAT SUVA HAS VERY LIMITED OPPORTUNITY THROUGHOUT YEAR TO CALL ON RESOURCE PEOPLE SUCH AS FITZSIMMONS FOR PROGRAMMING PURPOSES, AND THAT UNIVERSITY IS PARTICULARLY RECEPTIVE TO U.S. CULTURAL PRESENTATIONS OF THIS NATURE, THIS HAS HIT US DOUBLY HARD.

JAMES EMANUEL IS AN ARTICULATE AND ACCOMPLISHED SPECIALIST IN AMERICAN LITERATURE WHO WE THINK OTHER POSTS MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN MAKING USE OF AT SOME POINT DURING HIS STAY IN WARSAW.

THOMAS FITZSIMMONS WOULD, IN BULGARIA, LACK ADEQUATE NUMBERS OF “POETS, AUDIENCES WITH SOME SOPHISTICATION, INTEREST IN AVANT-GARDE EXPERIMENTATION” TO JUSTIFY ATTEMPT TO PROGRAM HIM HERE.

STANLEY KUNITZ HAS INFORMED DEPARTMENT THAT HE INTENDS TO MAKE PRESENTATION OF BRONZE MEDAL TO PRESIDENT SENGHOR AS PERSONAL GESTURE, WHEN HE MEETS HIM. MEDAL STRUCK WITH HEAD OF SENGHOR IS WORK OF FRENCH SCULPTOR, CHARLOTTE ENGLES, AND HONORS THE PRESIDENT AS POET AND HUMANIST. MEDAL WAS GIVEN TO KUNITZ BY A FRIEND WHO IS A COLLECTOR.

STANLEY KUNITZ SHOULD BE INFORMED BEFORE MEETING WITH PRESIDENT IF POSTS TAKES EXCEPTION TO THIS GESTURE.

STANLEY KUNITZ IS WARM, OUTGOING PERSON WHO ENJOYS MEETING PEOPLE OF ALL TYPES.

JAMES EMANUEL AT WARSAW HAS DECIDED AGAINST RENEWAL WITH AMERICAN PROFESSOR PROGRAM.

STANLEY KUNITZ GIVES SERIOUS ATTENTION TO YOUNG WRITERS. POST OFFICERS WERE GREATLY IMPRESSED WITH HIS STAMINA AND GOOD NATURE.

Robert Creely’s Levis and fisherman’s hat go a long way in describing the type of person he is.

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STANLEY KUNITZ’S READING BROKE UP BY DEMONSTRATION BY 35–40 MEMBERS OF NATIONAL UNION OF GHANAIAN STUDENTS JANUARY 13. THE PROTESTERS, AMONG THEM MEMBERS OF THE UNION’S EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE, CLAIMED KUNITZ WAS CIA AGENT AND ACCUSED USIS OF BEING CIA FRONT.

STANLEY KUNITZ WAS CALM THROUGHOUT THE DISTURBANCE.

STANLEY KUNITZ TALKED WITH SEVERAL STUDENTS IN HIS HOTEL ROOM, AND FOUND THEM EMBARRASSED AND APOLOGETIC.

STANLEY KUNITZ, A MOST UNLIKELY CIA OPERATIVE AT AGE OF 73, WAS FIRST CONVENIENT TARGET ON CAMPUS SINCE MEETING.

DIANE WAKOSKI WOULD LIKE TO HAVE WEEKENDS FREE AND WISHES TRAVEL TO VIENNA AT SOME TIME DURING HER STAY.

ROBERT CREELEY LECTURE TOPIC ON “SENSES OF AMERICAN POETRY” WELCOMED BY ENGLISH LITERARY SOCIETY. FOLLOWING MENTIONED BY CO-SPONSOR ONLY AS POSSIBLE ALTERNATE TOPICS: A. RECENT AMERICAN POETRY B. POUND, OLSON, AND CREELEY C. RECENT AMERICAN POETRY AND THE ORIENT D. POETRY AND AMERICAN EXPERIENCES.

JAMES EMANUEL IS A COMPETENT CRITIC OF BLACK LITERATURE IN GENERAL AND HIS OWN POETRY WAS THOROUGHLY ENJOYED BY THE ROMANIANS WHO HEARD IT.

ROBERT CREELEY’S “THE INNOCENCE,” “THE WARNING,” “THE WHIP,” “A MARRIAGE,” “JUST FRIENDS,” “THE GYE LADIES,” AND “THE MOON,” ARE TRANSLATED; WE HAVE REPRODUCED OTHER POEMS WHICH HE CAN SELECT TO READ WHICH WOULD NOT NECESSITATE INTERPRETATION.

ROBERT CREELEY PROGRAMS WE ARE SCHEDULING WILL HAVE JAPANESE POETS ALSO ON THE PLATFORM.

ROBERT CREELEY’S LEVIS AND FISHERMAN’S HAT GO A LONG WAY IN DESCRIBING THE TYPE OF PERSON HE IS.

ROBERT CREELEY IS RELAXED, EASY TO WORK WITH AND VERY PERSONABLE.

ROBERT CREELEY STIMULATED HIS AUDIENCES WITH HIS KNOWLEDGE OF CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN POETS AND THEIR WORK.

ROBERT CREELEY IS A GOOD SPEAKER, EXCELLENT AT DISCUSSION AND READS POETRY VERY WELL.

DIANE WAKOSKI PROVED AN UNUSUALLY EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATOR AND HER OWN READINGS OF HER WORKS MADE GOOD THEATRE AS WELL, STIMULATING IMAGINATION AND ENTHUSIASM OF HER AUDIENCES (POETS, WRITERS, CRITICS, TRANSLATORS, PROFESSORS & GRADUATE STUDENTS) WHICH IN ALL FOUR PROGRAM CITIES WERE UNIFORMLY DELIGHTED AND IMPRESSED WITH HER PRESENTATIONS AND APPROACH.

DIANE WAKOSKI COMMUNICATED A GREAT DEAL ABOUT CONTEMPORARY US, INCLUDING INSIGHTS INTO SOCIO/CULTURAL SCENES.

DIANE WAKOSKI’S INFORMAL DISCUSSIONS AFTER THE PRESENTATIONS WERE MODELS OF A NATURAL INTELLECTUAL “GIVE & TAKE.”

ROBERT CREELEY WAS TREATED ROYALLY IN TAEGU AS WELL AS IN SEOUL.

JOHN BALABAN SHOULD POSTPONE DECISION SINCE HIS ACADEMIC CREDENTIALS AND STANDING AS CONTEMPORARY POET INDICATE HE WOULD BE PROFESSIONAL SUCCESS.

ROBERT CREELEY’S PRESENTATION WAS SERIOUS AND INTERESTING IN REVEALING THE EXPLOSION OF AMERICAN SOCIAL CONSCIOUSNESS IN THE ’60S AND ’70S.

ROBERT CREELEY IMPRESSED THE AUDIENCE WITH HIS SCHOLARSHIP, HUMANISM, WRITING AND SINCERITY IN HIS LIFE STYLE. ONE CENTER DIRECTOR REPORTED, “THE AUDIENCE DIDN’T WANT TO GO HOME.”

ROBERT CREELEY HAS ENORMOUS ENERGY AND IS AN EXCELLENT EXAMPLE OF A SOCIALLY-CONSCIOUS ARTIST.

ELISAVIETTA RITCHIE’S AUGUST 19 READING AT THE JEFFERSON CENTER IN MANILA WAS NEARLY RAINED OUT BY TYPHOON IBIANG, BUT A DEDICATED GROUP OF POETRY ENTHUSIASTS SHOWED UP TO LISTEN AND TO HELP LAUNCH HER NEW BOOK “MOVING TO LARGER QUARTERS.”

ELISAVIETTA RITCHIE IS AN ACCOMPLISHED POET WHO READS AND DISCUSSES HER POETRY WELL.

ELISAVIETTA RITCHIE’S STRONG INTEREST IN LOCAL WRITERS AND HER WILLINGNESS TO SPEND LONG HOURS WITH THEM OFFERING COUNSEL AND ADVICE ALSO CONTRIBUTED TO THE EXCELLENT IMPRESSION SHE MADE DURING HER VISIT.

IF JAMES EMANUEL UNAVAILABLE, PERHAPS DR. RUSSELL L. ADAMS, HEAD, DEPARTMENT OF AFRO-AMERICAN STUDIES, HOWARD UNIVERSITY, COULD LECTURE ON SOME TOPICS RELEVANT TO “ROOTS.”

TED JOANS IS A POTENTIAL PARTICIPANT IN JOINT PRESENTATION ON LANGSTON HUGHES WITH DOLORES LAIRET EVENING MARCH 9 OR 10, FOR DAKAR AUDIENCE OF ACADEMICS, ARTISTS, WRITERS, ET AL. FORMAT: MIXTURE OF ENGLISH AND FRENCH READINGS WITH FRENCH COMMENTARY.

TED JOANS—WELCOMED HERE ANYTIME FOR INFORMAL POETRY READINGS AND SESSIONS WITH STUDENTS ON PER DIEM BASIS.

DANIEL EPSTEIN IS SUPERB POET AND SUPERB PERFORMER, KNOWING HOW TO PLAY ANY AUDIENCE, NO MATTER THE SIZE OR RACIAL MAKE-UP.

DANIEL EPSTEIN SHOWED SENSITIVITY TO SOUTH AFRICAN SCENE AND MADE FRIENDS BY INVITING OTHER POETS TO JOIN HIM IN PROGRAM AND BY DEDICATING EVENING TO ALL THOSE BANNED POETS WHOSE VOICE COULD NOT BE HEARD IN SOUTH AFRICA.

DANIEL EPSTEIN RECOMMENDED HIGHLY FOR FUTURE PROGRAMMING.

TED JOANS, THE ROD RODGERS AND ALI ABDULLAH DANCE TROUPES, AND LECTURES BY JULIA HOTTON, OLIVER FRANKLIN, AND DOLORES LAIRET, HAD PERFORMANCES DURING AN AFROAMERICAN CULTURE MONTH.

SUHAIR HAMMAD, A POET OF PALESTINIAN ORIGIN, THE MOST FAMOUS AMONGST THOSE WHO RECITE POETRY ON BROADWAY.

AMIRI BARAKA GAVE A READING OF HIS NOW-INFAMOUS SCREED “SOMEBODY BLEW UP AMERICA – A POEM ABOUT SEPTEMBER 11” AT THE PRESTIGIOUS NAPOLI POESIA FESTIVAL IN THE OUTDOOR AMPHITHEATER OF THE PARCO CAMALDOLI IN NAPLES (THOUGH NO U.S. OFFICIAL WAS IN ATTENDANCE).

BRENDA FLANAGAN, AN AMERICAN OF TRINIDADIAN ORIGIN, CAPTIVATED KUWAITI AUDIENCES WITH READINGS OF TIMELESS POETRY BY NOTED AMERICAN WRITERS AND EXCERPTS FROM HER LATEST COLLECTION OF SHORT STORIES.

BRENDA FLANAGAN ENCHANTED MORE THAN 500 KUWAITI HIGH SCHOOL AND UNIVERSITY STUDENTS AS WELL AS THEIR INSTRUCTORS WITH RIVETING DRAMATIC INTERPRETATIONS OF AMERICAN LITERATURE AND PERSONAL REMINISCENCES THAT CLARIFIED THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN EXPERIENCE IN THE 1960’S AND 70’S.

BRENDA FLANAGAN ALSO PROMOTED STUDY IN THE U.S. TO STUDENT AUDIENCES AND EXCHANGED LITERARY VIEWS WITH OVER 40 KUWAITI WRITERS, ACADEMICS, AND INTELLECTUALS.

BRENDA FLANAGAN READILY BONDED WITH MALE AND FEMALE KUWAITIS, THROUGH HER INSPIRING READINGS AND EXPERT ADVICE FOR IMPROVING THEIR CREATIVE WRITING.

BRENDA FLANAGAN HELD A CREATIVE WRITING WORKSHOP WITH HIJAB- (HEADSCARF) AND NIKAB- (FACE VEIL) CLAD UNIVERSITY STUDENTS, FUTURE ENGLISH TEACHERS IN KUWAIT’S PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

NATASHA TRETHEWAY ENLIGHTENED YOUNG OMANI AUDIENCES ABOUT THE COMPELLING HISTORY OF AFRICAN-AMERICANS AND THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO BROADER AMERICAN SOCIETY AND ENGENDERED LIVELY DISCUSSION BETWEEN THE SPEAKERS AND THEIR AUDIENCES.

NATASHA TRETHEWEY BEGAN HER DISCUSSION OF CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN AMERICAN LITERATURE BY RECITING SOME OF HER OWN POEMS, BEFORE GOING ON TO DESCRIBE CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN-AMERICAN LITERATURE AND HOW IT HAS CHANGED OVER TIME. A SMALL BUT ENGAGED AUDIENCE LISTENED ATTENTIVELY TO HER REMARKS.

NATASHA TRETHEWEY’S QUESTION AND ANSWER SESSION BECAME ENERGIZED WHEN STUDENTS BEGAN TO CONSIDER WHETHER WORKS BY HIP-HOP ARTISTS SUCH AS “PUFF DADDY” AND “50 CENTS” SHOULD BE CONSIDERED CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN-AMERICAN LITERATURE.

SCOTT MOMADAY (ARTIST FOR PEACE, NATIVE AMERICAN WRITER, POET, PAINTER, PROFESSOR) IS AN UNESCO CELEBRITY ADVOCATE. UNESCO USES PRIZES AND CELEBRITIES TO “AMPLIFY” THE MISSION OF UNESCO. WHILE THE PRIZES HAVE, AT TIMES, BEEN CONTROVERSIAL, THE CELEBRITY ADVOCATE PROGRAM IS NOT.

SCOTT MOMADAY IS A GIFTED SPEAKER AND EXCELLENT SOURCE OF INFORMATION ON NATIVE AMERICAN CULTURE.

SCOTT MOMADAY’S WIFE HAD TOLD UNESCO STAFF PRIVATELY IN ADVANCE OF THE LUNCH THAT HE OPPOSED THE CULTURAL DIVERSITY CONVENTION. HOWEVER, WHEN ASKED ABOUT THE CONVENTION AT LUNCH, MOMADAY ANSWERED VAGUELY THAT HE THOUGHT ITS SIGNIFICANCE WAS IMPORTANT AND THAT UNESCO DOES AN EXCELLENT JOB ON CULTURAL ISSUES IN GENERAL.

SCOTT MOMADAY NOTED THAT HE WOULD BE IN RUSSIA THIS AUGUST AND WAS INTERESTED IN CONTACTING THE AMERICAN EMBASSY IN MOSCOW.

SCOTT MOMADAY IS AN EXCELLENT SPEAKER, A PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING AUTHOR, EXPERT ON NATIVE AMERICAN CULTURE, AND A THOROUGHLY DEVOTED ADVOCATE OF CULTURAL HERITAGE.

GINA LORING CULTURAL ENVOY PROGRAM FROM JANUARY 26 TO FEBRUARY 5, 2008 SUPPORTED THE MSP GOAL OF PROMOTION OF DEMOCRACY IN KUWAIT BY TEACHING HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS HOW TO WRITE AND PERFORM DRAMA THAT RAISES SOCIETAL AWARENESS OF CIVIL ISSUES.

GINA LORING ALSO THRILLED LARGE AUDIENCES OF KUWAITIS, IN OTHER VENUES, WITH POETRY READINGS AND SONGS IN COMMEMORATION OF BLACK HISTORY MONTH.

GINA LORING’S LITERARY GIFTS AND ABILITY TO CONNECT WITH YOUNGER KUWAITIS INSPIRED THEM WITH NEW TECHNIQUES FOR ADDRESSING THE INEQUALITIES THAT ARE AN OBSTACLE TO KUWAIT’S SOCIETAL DEVELOPMENT.

GINA LORING POETRY AND HIP HOP TRIO’S VISIT GOAL WAS TO EXPOSE KUWAITIS, ESPECIALLY THE YOUNGER GENERATION, TO AMERICAN SOCIETY AND VALUES BY OFFERING A RARE, FIRST-TIME INTRODUCTION TO AMERICAN YOUTH MUSIC CULTURE.

GINA LORING’S VISIT TOOK PLACE AT A TIME WHEN ARTS AND MUSIC EDUCATION WAS INCREASINGLY UNDER ATTACK FROM ISLAMISTS IN KUWAIT.

GINA LORING POETRY AND HIP HOP TRIO’S EVENTFUL PROGRAM INCLUDED PUBLIC PERFORMANCES BEFORE HUNDREDS OF LISTENERS AT THE HEAVILY PATRONIZED SOUQ SHARQ AND AL KOUT SHOPPING MALLS, INCLUDING A PERFORMANCE IN A REMOTE DESERT AREA OF KUWAIT WHERE EXTREMELY CONSERVATIVE AND SOMETIMES ANTI-AMERICAN SENTIMENTS PREVAIL.

GINA LORING POETRY AND HIP HOP TRIO THRILLED AUDIENCES, SPARKING GREAT INTEREST IN THIS AMERICAN ART FORM. THE EMBASSY HIGHLY RECOMMENDS THE GINA LORING TRIO TO OTHER POSTS SEEKING TO BUILD RAPPORT AND GREATER UNDERSTANDING OF AMERICAN CULTURE WITH YOUNGER AUDIENCES.

GINA LORING POETRY AND HIP HOP TRIO ACTED AS TRUE CULTURAL AMBASSADORS OF GOODWILL. DESPITE QUESTIONS REGARDING THE APPROPRIATENESS OF THIS TYPE OF MUSIC FOR KUWAIT AUDIENCES RAISED PRIOR TO IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROGRAM, THE GROUP PROVED EXCEPTIONAL AT ACHIEVING AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION AND WINNING OVER CONSERVATIVE AUDIENCES.

GINA LORING POETRY AND HIP HOP TRIO QUICKLY BECAME THE DARLINGS OF THE KUWAITI PRESS. THE TRIO HAD ONE OF THE LONGEST SEGMENTS EVER ON THE POPULAR MORNING TALK SHOW “GOOD MORNING KUWAIT” WHEN THE HOSTS INTERVIEWED THE GROUP MEMBERS FOR 18 MINUTES.

GINA LORING INTRIGUED THE AUDIENCE WITH A LIVE POETRY RECITAL AND JOSH SILVERSTEIN DEMONSTRATED HIS BEATBOX TECHNIQUE TO THE DELIGHT NOT ONLY OF THE VIEWING AUDIENCE BUT ALSO OF THE TECHNICAL CREW AS WELL.

GINA LORING VISIT MADE POSSIBLE BY PUBLIC AFFAIRS’ CLOSE COORDINATION WITH THE SPORTS DRINK COMPANY, RED BULL. RED BULL LIBERALLY PROVIDED ASSISTANCE FOR THE HIP HOP GROUP’S LODGING IN KUWAIT AND CONCERT EXPENSES. ADDITIONALLY, FOOT LOCKER SUPPLIED PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS AND PAID PRINTING COSTS FOR THE TWO PUBLIC PERFORMANCES. FINALLY, THE MANAGEMENT OF THE TWO MALLS OFFERED THE VENUES AND SUPPLIED SECURITY FOR THE EVENTS FREE-OF-CHARGE.

GINA LORING ENCOURAGED STUDENTS IN KUWAIT TO WRITE ABOUT SOCIAL ISSUES IN KUWAIT AND TO BE CANDID ABOUT AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT IN GOVERNANCE, AND THEN PUT IT ALL TOGETHER IN A SINGLE PLAY.

MARILYN HENSON POEM READ BY A LOCAL TRANSLATOR WHEN THE SKYPE CONNECTION LOST SOUND.

MARILYN HENSON VISITED YEKATERINBURG THE YEAR BEFORE.

THYLIAS MOSS’S POIGNANT LIFE STORY AND THE PROFUNDITY OF HER POETRY AND PHILOSOPHY MOVED MANY STUDENTS AT THE URALS LITERARY MUSEUM.

ILENE EVANS’ PROGRAM IN KUWAIT DIRECTLY SUPPORTED THE MSP GOALS OF EXPLAINING AMERICAN CULTURE AND VALUES, AS WELL AS ENCOURAGING DEMOCRATIC PRACTICES AND EMPOWERING WOMEN, TO A WIDE RANGE OF KUWAITI AUDIENCES FROM DIFFERENT HIGH SCHOOLS AND UNIVERSITIES.

ILENE EVANS RECEIVED A SPECIAL INVITATION FROM A PROMINENT ARTS PATRON AND MEMBER OF THE RULING FAMILY TO COME BACK TO KUWAIT AT THE SPECIAL INVITATION OF DAR AL-ATHAR AL-ISLAMIYYAH CULTURAL CENTER. THE PROGRAM REINFORCED AMERICAN VALUES, INCLUDED VALUING DIVERSITY, THE UNDERLYING THEME OF BLACK HISTORY MONTH.

ILENE EVANS DELIVERED WELL-ATTENDED PERFORMANCES AT TWO OF KUWAIT’S LARGEST PRIVATE HIGH SCHOOLS IN KUWAIT, ATTENDED PROMINENTLY BY KUWAITIS.

ILENE EVANS WAS PARTICULARLY EFFECTIVE WHEN SHE DREW ON STORIES FROM THE LOCAL GULF POPULAR CULTURE AND TRADITIONS, AND USED THEM TO HIGHLIGHT SIMILARITIES BETWEEN KUWAITI AND AMERICAN VALUES.

ILENE EVANS WAS AN EXCELLENT PERFORMING ARTIST, STORYTELLER, AND SPEAKER WHO INSPIRED MANY YOUNG KUWAITIS BY DRAWING ON THEIR ENTHUSIASM FOR THEIR OWN STRONG TRADITION OF STORYTELLING.

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