Born in San Francisco, Tongo Eisen-Martin is the author of the critically acclaimed poetry book, “Someone’s Dead Already,” and his much-awaited second book, “Heaven is All Goodbyes
.” He is a movement worker, educator and poet who has organized against mass incarceration and extrajudicial killing of black people throughout the United States. He has educated in detention centers from New York’s Rikers Island to California’s San Quentin State Prison. He was also adjunct faculty at the Institute for Research in African-American Studies at Columbia University in New York. Subscribing to the Freirian model of education, he designed curricula for oppressed people’s education projects from San Francisco to South Africa. His latest curriculum on extrajudicial killing of black people, “We Charge Genocide Again,” has been used as an educational and organizing tool throughout the country. He uses his craft to create liberated territory wherever he performs and teaches. He recently lived and organized around issues of human rights and self-determination in Jackson, Mississippi.
News and Reviews:
Our Generation: Rules Are Meant to Be Broken, an interview with Tongo Eisen-Martin (Poetry Foundation)
A joint address to change hearts and minds through poetry (KQED Arts)
“Breaking” Presents: Tongo Eisen-Martin, a poet with movement-building in his bones (Colorlines)