Amiri Baraka, born Leroi Jones, is the author of more than 40 books of essays, poems, drama, and music history and criticism. A seminal member of the Black Arts movement, he is a poet icon and revolutionary political activist who recites poetry and lectures on cultural and political issues extensively in the U.S., the Caribbean, Africa, and Europe. In addition to being the former poet laureate of New Jersey, his numerous literary prizes and honors include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, the PEN/Faulkner Award, the Rockefeller Foundation Award for Drama, the
Langston Hughes Award from The City College of New York, and a lifetime achievement award from the Before Columbus Foundation. He has taught poetry at the New School for Social Research in New York, literature at the University of Buffalo, and drama at Columbia University. Since 1985 he has been a professor of
Africana Studies at the State University of New York in Stony Brook. He is co-director, with his wife, of Kimako's Blues People, a community arts space. Amiri and Amina Baraka live in Newark, New Jersey.