CSULA Department of English | Events

Victor Hernández Cruz will be the featured reader at the 2009 Jean Burden Poetry Reading. The event will take place on Tuesday, April 7, 2009 at 6:30pm in the Golden Eagle Ballroom. A reception will follow the reading, and copies of Cruz' books will be available for sale and signing by the poet at the reading. Cruz' poetry will also be available prior to the reading in the University Bookstore.

Victor Hernández Cruz was born in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico, and moved to New York City with his family when he was five years old.

Photo of Victor Hernandez Cruz

By the time he became a teenager, he had already completed a collection of poetry, Papo Got His Gun, and, at the age of twenty, published Snaps. He has taught at San Francisco State University, The University of Michigan, and The Universities of California at Berkeley and San Diego. 

"Victor Hernández Cruz has long been the defining poet of that complex bridge between the Latino and mainland cultures of the U.S. Maraca: New and Selected Poems 1965-2000 proves the extraordinary range of this great, enduring poet, whose articulately persuasive humor and intelligence bear persistent witness to a meld of peoples."

---Judges' Citation for the International Griffin Poetry Prize

A two-time World Heavyweight Champion poet, his other works include Mainland, Tropicalization, By Lingual Wholes, Red Beans (a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year), Panoramas, Maraca: New & Selected Poems (a finalist for both the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize and the Griffin Poetry Prize), and, most recently, The Mountain in the Sea. Together with Virgil Suarez and Leroy Quintana, Cruz also edited the anthology Paper Dance: 55 Latino Poets.




Featured on Bill Moyers’ “Language of Life” series, Cruz has received numerous awards including the Guggenheim Fellowship and the New York Poetry Foundation Award. He was elected as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2008. He currently divides his time between Morocco and Puerto Rico. 

This event is made possible by the CSULA Center for Contemporary Poetry and Poetics, the Department of English, the College of Arts and Letters, the CSULA Chicano Studies Department, The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens, Yankee Magazine, the Association of Writers and Writing Programs, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information, call the Cal State L.A. English Department at (323) 343-4140.

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