LITTLE ROCK —The Arkansas Center for the Book announces a virtual poetry program with Jericho Brown to take place Feb. 4, 2021. The hour long program will include Arkansas Poet Laureate, Jo McDougall, and will focus on Jericho Brown’s 2020 Pulitzer Prize-winning book of poetry, “The Tradition” (Port Townsend, WA: Copper Canyon Press, 2019). The event will be free of charge and open to the public via Zoom and also livestreamed over YouTube. Additional information about the program is available on the Arkansas State Library’s website at

Jericho Brown is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Brown’s first book, “Please” (2008), won the American Book Award. His second book, “The New Testament” (2014), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was named one of the best of the year by “Library Journal,” “Coldfront,” and the Academy of American Poets. In addition to the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, his third book, “The Tradition” (2019), was a finalist for the 2019 National Book Award. Brown’s poems have appeared in “Buzzfeed,” “The Nation,” “The New York Times,” “The New Yorker,” “The New Republic,” “Time,” “The Pushcart Prize” anthology, and several volumes of “The Best American Poetry” anthologies. He is the Charles Howard Candler Professor of Creative Writing and the Director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University in Atlanta.

Jo McDougall has been Poet Laureate of Arkansas since her appointment in 2018 by Governor Asa Hutchinson. She earned an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville and has published seven collections of poetry and a memoir. She has won many awards including a Pushcart Prize (2020), The Arkansas Porter Prize Lifetime Achievement Award in Poetry (2019), and an Academy of American Poets Prize. McDougall was inducted into the Arkansas Writers’ Hall of Fame in 2006. With a proclamation from Governor Hutchinson in 2020, she established the first Arkansas Youth Poetry Day, to be celebrated annually.   

The Arkansas Center for the Book was established in 2000 and is affiliated with the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Headquartered at the Arkansas State Library, a division of the Arkansas Department of Education, the Arkansas Center for the Book exists to encourage reading, writing, and literacy in Arkansas and to protect the rich literary history of Arkansas by preserving and promoting books and literature within the state.

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