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Givens Foundation | Black Market Reads

Black Market Reads is a menu for Black literary consumption and all of its spin-offs. Featuring Black artists who love to read and write and engage in arts and culture.

To listen to episodes and find great additional content about our authors and their work, visit our website (

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PRODUCER: The Givens Foundation for African American Literature

SEASON TWO - FOUR: Hosted by Lissa Jones

SEASON ONE: BMR was originated by Tana Hargest on behalf of The Givens Foundation, HOSTED BY Erin Sharkey and Junauda Petrus of Free Black Dirt, and other guest hosts as introduced, MUSIC: Sarah White - Through People [M¥K Remix]

Black Market Reads is made possible through the generous support of our individual donors, Target Foundation, and the voters of Minnesota, through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

For more information about the Givens Foundation, visit their website. (

Jul 19, 2021

On this episode we’re excited to present a conversation with author, historian, and educator Carol Anderson on her recent work The Second: Race and Guns in a Fatally Unequal America. This conversation was recorded as part of a live virtual event in partnership with Magers & Quinn Booksellers  and Hennepin Avenue...

May 30, 2021

Essayist, memoirist, and, now, novelist Morgan Jerkins sits down with Lissa Jones. She discusses her inspirations for this story, both from her past (as a teenager she worked in her father's OB/GYN practice) and present (she tells us her character Amara was inspired by Vice President Kamala Harris). Though Caul Baby is...

Apr 24, 2021

In this episode, Lissa speaks with Javon Johnson, about his new poetry collection, Ain't Never Not Been Black (Button Poetry, 2020). Javon Johnson, Ph.D. is a poet, performer, professor and recipient of numerous awards. According to poet Rudy Francisco, Dr. Johnson is “is one of the most brilliant writers in the...

Mar 1, 2021

Listen to audio of poets reading their work from Can't Stop, Won't Stop: Poems in the wake of racial injustice from a chapbook published by Rain Taxi, recorded on the site of George Floyd Square in Minneapolis by

Apnea and Bruxism  by Michael Kleber Diggs

a little glimpse  by keno evol

Familiar Fruit  by...

Feb 28, 2021

One of the defining events of the past year, in Minnesota and around the world, was the murder of George Floyd and the international protests demanding justice.

In this episode, Lissa speaks with Mary Moore Easter, editor and poet, and James Bernard Short, a poet who lives near the intersection now known as George Floyd...