Home Book Award Jericho Brown returns to Aspen

Jericho Brown returns to Aspen

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Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Jericho Brown will be the keynote speaker at Aspen Words’ annual Book Ball 2022 on June 21.

Brown was most recently in Aspen, presenting a reading and conversation alongside her friend and fellow poet Ada Limón during the 2020 Winter Words Speaker Series. During this conversation, Brown read two works appearing in “The Tradition” , a collection of poems that won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 2020. Returning to Aspen Words in a new title at their annual gala, held at the Jerome Hotel, Brown will appear with Dawnie Walton, winner of the 2022 Aspen Words Literary Prize , and Aspen Words Leadership Award winners Isa Catto and Daniel Shaw.

The gala, to be held in the Grand Ballroom, will also feature the participation of faculty from the Summer Words 2022 conference, including authors Lan Samantha Chang, Mark Doty, Terrance Hayes, Fonda Lee, Mary Beth Keane, Robert Kolker, Claribel Ortega, Joanna Rakoff and Natalie Serber.



Brown said of his return to Aspen, “I’m so excited to be back for the Book Ball gala because it gives me the chance to talk to a community that I always feel a part of, no matter how far away. I am.”

Brown’s book, The Tradition, is a collection of poems that focus on history, identity, and the intersection of the personal and the political. His poetry specifically focuses on themes of father and son, being a black man, mass shootings, and other topics, prescient in 2020 and more closely tied to current events than ever.



“The great wonder of poetry is how it distills experience, illuminates the senses, and expands our capacity for understanding. We are fortunate to welcome Jericho Brown, whose precise and honest poems question and celebrate the contradictions of life. He is a master of words and an inspiring chronicler of our times,” said Adrienne Brodeur, CEO of Aspen Words.


Brown’s poems have appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The New Republic, Buzzfeed, and The Pushcart Prize Anthology. Her first book, “Please,” won the American Book Award, and her second book, “The New Testament,” won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. He is an Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at Emory University.

Brown also taught as a visiting faculty member at Aspen during the 2017 Summer Words session. Recalling his time, he remarked of the nonprofit, “Aspen Words is a model on how to build and nurture, as well as expand, a community of writers and public readership.”

Ticket purchases for Book Ball support events serving over 8,700 attendees. These include writing workshops for adults and young people, a series of author conferences, writers’ residencies, a literary prize celebrating social impact fiction and a book club. city-wide community. Donations and ticket sales from the event also help support writers’ conference scholarships for emerging writers from historically underrepresented groups, free poetry slam workshops for middle and high school students. of the Roaring Fork Valley, free tickets for educators and students to attend all events, virtually or in-person and community book club discussions in conjunction with events on the Red Brick Lawn.