100 THOUSAND POETS FOR CHANGE "FINAL PRESS RELEASE"
650 events in 450 cities and 95 countries will take place on September 24 to promote environmental, social, and political change. Poets, writers, artists will create, perform and demonstrate in their communities, and decide their own specific area of focus for change within the framework of peace and sustainability, which founder Michael Rothenberg stated, “…is a major concern worldwide and the guiding principle for this global event.”
Bob Holman and Margery Snyder, in a recent article on About.com said, “the beauty of the concept of 100 Thousand Poets for Change is that it is completely decentralized and completely inclusive.” All those involved are hoping, through their actions and events, to seize and redirect the political and social dialogue of the day and turn the narrative of civilization towards peace and sustainability.
Poetry and peace gatherings are planned in strife-torn Kabul and Jalalabad, Afghanistan. In political hotspots such as Cairo and Alexandria, Egypt, and Madison, Wisconsin poetry demonstrations and readings are being organized.
To date there are over 270 events in the United States. Reading, Pennsylvania, also known as “Murder City”, is being transformed by hundreds of performing artists into a “Community Through Unity” with a festival of poetry, art, hip-hop, music and dance. In Washington, DC, there will be a “walk of shame” to the embassies of Yemen, Burma, and Turkmenistan, countries where citizens’ rights of free speech have been suppressed and where poets and writers have been threatened, arrested, and murdered for their words and their activism. Poems by poets of those nations will be read outside the embassies, so that they, too, may participate in 100 Thousand Poets for Change.
In Mexico there are over 30 events, with 18 poetic actions in Mexico City, where poets as well as
environmental and political activists are hoping to encourage reflection and creative responses against systemic violence through the written and the spoken word with day long street events, readings and workshops. More than a third of these events are organized by collectives actively working towards a non-violent approach to solve the country's most pressing problems.
Immediately following September 24th all documentation on the 100TPC.org website will be preserved by Stanford University in California, which has recognized 100 Thousand Poets for Change as an historical event, the largest poetry reading in history. They will archive the complete contents of the website, 100TPC.org, as part of their digital archiving program LOCKSS.
Founder Michael Rothenberg is a widely known poet, editor of the online literary magazine Bigbridge.org and an environmental activist based in Northern California.
For information contact: http://www.100TPC.org