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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. (

Dec 31, 2018

In this episode we honor the late Ntozake Shange -- poet, author, playwright, artist. Her seminal work, the choreo-poem For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/ When the Rainbow is Enuf inspired generations of black women to see themselves differently and to question structures of power that tried to limit their...

Dec 7, 2018

On this episode, Lissa talks with poet Julian Randall  about his impressive debut collection Refuse. Julian is a Living, Queer, Black poet from Chicago. He has received fellowships from Callaloo, BOAAT and the Watering Hole and was the 2015 National College Slam (CUPSI) Best Poet, as well as being the recipient a...

Nov 9, 2018

Education, justice, innocence, and public policy on this very special episode.

First, Lissa speaks with civil right activist, and now author, DeRay Mckesson about his new book On the Other Side of Freedom: the Case for Hope. Then we revisit our interviews with Dr. Artika Tyner and Alexs Pate discussing their work toward...

Oct 22, 2018

On this bonus episode, we're sharing a series of interviews we recorded live from the 2018 Twin Cities Book Festival at the Minnesota State Fair grounds. Interviews with:

Archie Givens (The Givens Foundation), Mary Taris (Publisher, Strive Publishing), Donna Gingery (author), LaBelle Nambangi (author), Amber James...

Oct 12, 2018

In the Season Four Premier Lissa speaks with award-winning poet and spoken word artist Patricia Smith. Smith is the author of eight books of poetry, most recently Incendiary Art which was awarded the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, Los Angeles Times Book Prize, NAACP image award, and was a finalist for the 2018...