Mjumbe Writers' Workshop
Black Cultural Center classroom, second floor
March 19, April 2 - 23, 2008
Wednesdays, 4pm - 5:30pm

Mjumbe, which means "messenger" in Swahili, is the literary magazine produced by students of African diaspora at Swarthmore College. The next issue of Mjumbe will feature a series of critical essays about the current condition of people of African diaspora. This workshop is designed to assist contributors to this issue with the revision of their essays. Products from this writers' workshop will be reviewed by a small editorial board, and a select few will be chosen for publication in Mjumbe.

This writers' workshop will consist of 5 true working sessions. Workshop participants will study the work of James Baldwin and other critical essayists for insight on this writing form, as well as inspiration for their development as writers.  In this supportive and collaborative workshop, participants will reflect on their writing styles and habit, engage in peer review activities, and receive constructive criticism on the revision of their essays.

Workshop participants should identify an original and existing working draft of an essay that would be appropriate for Mjumbe. This original essay might be a paper for a Black Studies class, an open letter, or a commentary on a pressing issue. Outlines and incomplete papers are inadmissible.

Workshop participants are expected to bring 4 copies of their original essays to the first session on March 19. These copies will be shared with the workshop facilitator and workshop participants. Participation in this workshop is limited - a maximum of 8 people.


Workshop Topics

March 19

Role and responsibility of the writer in Africana liberatory struggle

April 2

Peer review

April 9

Clarity and organization

April 16

Evidence and support in argument construction

April 23

Verifying citations and adherence to citation style

Kristine S. Lewis, Ph.D.

Kristine S. Lewis is Assistant Professor of Multicultural and Urban Education in the School of Education at Drexel University. Her scholarly research interests include student activism, college student development, and race and ethnicity in higher education.