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ICFRC: Jamaica: Holdin' a Vibe in a Textured Landscape

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From Lorna Goodison's third world woman as mystic healer to Reggae and Dancehall pulsing through Kingston nights, Jamaica moves to its own drum beat, making a dance out of its troubles. It is a textured land with its own struggles, secrets and yet an almost inexplicable capacity for lifting the spirit. Get into the vibe with this talk as we pull up the dance and take a closer look at Jamaica's dualities.

Yashika Graham [Poetry, fiction and nonfiction writer, visual artist, radio broadcaster; Jamaica] won the 2019 Mervyn Morris Prize for Poetry from the University of the West Indies, Mona, where she read for a Bachelors degree in Literatures in English and twice won the Poetry Clash Competition. An executive member of the Poetry Society of Jamaica, she has been awarded a Centrum Writer's Residency and has been featured on stages including the Dodge Poetry Festival (USA), Bristol Festival of Literature (UK), the World Festival of Poetry (Venezuela) and the Port Townsend Writers Conference (USA), where she has also delivered craft talks and taught cross-genre workshops.

Her poetry, prose and literary criticism have been published internationally including in Spillway Magazine, Magma, Cordite Review, PREE Lit, Bookmarked, Jamaica Journal, The Caribbean Journal of Social Work and others. Short films for her poems "Directions from the Border" and "Time Travel" -- for which she won a gold medal and the Noteworthy Writer award from the Jamaica Creative Writing Competition - premiered in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Her debut collection Some of Us Can Go Back Home is forthcoming from Blouse & Skirt Books.

For more information about the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council, visit icfrc.org.

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