Trailblazing Women: Emily Dickinson

Facebook Live
8:00 PM—9:00 PM ET

Emily Dickinson and Poetry in America Panel Discussion

PBS Books hosted a virtual engagement to highlight trailblazing poet Emily Dickinson (1830-1885) in partnership with Poetry In America. Learn behind-the-scenes insights by Poetry in America’s creator and host Elisa New and bilingual Dominican-American poet Rhina Espaillat.

Having lived more than 150 years ago, trailblazer Emily Dickinson is still considered one of America’s most distinctive and prolific poets, having written nearly 2,000 poems. Learn more about Emily Dickinson, her poems, her ongoing revisions, and the amazing contemporary poets that she has influenced.

Poetry in America is presented by WGBH Boston and distributed by American Public Television. In partnership with Harvard, Poetry in America offers free online courses for global learners as well as for-credit and professional development courses for undergraduates, graduate students, highly motivated high-school students, and educational practitioners. 

About the Panelists

Elisa New is the Director and Host of Poetry in America, director of Verse Video Education, and Powell M. Cabot Professor of American Literature at Harvard University, where she teaches American literature from the Puritans through the present. New created Poetry in America, a public television series, to bring poetry into living rooms and onto screens of all kinds. The show can be seen on public television and streaming platforms, in schools and libraries, and on airlines. Guests include Shaquille O’Neal, Bono, Cynthia Nixon, Nas, Joe Biden, Herbie Hancock, Elena Kagan, Robert Pinsky, Sonia Sanchez, Bill Clinton, John McCain, Li-Young Lee, Samantha Power, Adam Gopnik, Mary Chapin Carpenter, John Kerry, Katie Couric, and Bill T. Jones. Along with the series, New produces educational materials on American poetry for all ages—from middle school students and K-12 teachers through lifelong learners—distributed by Harvard University, Amplify Education, and Arizona State University.

Rhina P. Espaillat has published twelve full-length books, four chapbooks and a monograph on translation. Her most recent publications are two poetry collections titled And After All and The Field, and a chapbook in collaboration with fellow poet Alfred Nicol, “Brief Accident of Light.”  Espaillat is noted for her English translations of Saint  John of the Cross, as well as her book of Spanish translations of Robert Frost, Algo hay que no es amigo de los muros/Something There Is that Doesn’t Love a Wall, and her bilingual collection of Richard Wilbur translations, Oscura fruta/Dark Berries.

PBS Books Trailblazing Women Series

This event is part of PBS Books Trailblazing Women Series. To mark the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, PBS launched multiplatform programming focused on “Trailblazers” in order to commemorate the fight for women’s suffrage in the US and the stories of modern women, who continue to shatter the glass ceiling and transform modern history. The Trailblazers PBS theme will be anchored by a documentary entitled “The Vote.“

To complement this project, PBS Books has developed and launched their Trailblazing Women Virtual Series, which will highlight amazing stories of American women through summer-long programming. In June, July, and August, PBS Books is offering programming on Facebook Live in collaboration with libraries across American and local PBS stations.

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