Ewuare X. Osayande

Ewuare X. Osayande is an award-winning poet, social justice activist and anti-oppression educator.

Osayande is the founder of Freedom Plow, a liberation education initiative that provides intersectional anti-racism workshops for college, faith-based, non-profit and grassroots organizations.

Ewuare Osayande is a dynamic lecturer on the pressing social and political issues of our time. He has spoken at hundreds of educational, religious and community centers and institutions across the United States and Canada including Harvard University, Howard University, Cornell University, Cheyney University, Emory University and the University of Pennsylvania.

He is the author of more than fifteen books of essays, poems and speeches including Whose America?: New and Selected Poems with an introduction by Haki R. Madhubuti and Commemorating King: Speeches Honoring the Civil Rights Movement. His other books include Misogyny & the Emcee: Sex, Race & Hip Hop and Blood Luxury with an introduction by Amiri Baraka.

In 2012 Osayande edited and published Stand Our Ground: Poems for Trayvon Martin and Marissa Alexander, a global anthology of social justice poetry that raised more than $10,000 for the Trayvon Martin Foundation and the Marissa Alexander Legal Defense Fund.

Yolanda Wisher, Poet Laureate of the City of Philadelphia has said, “Ewuare Osayande’s poems are anthems for 21st Century Black folk, Harriet’s rifle behind our backs in the swamp. He reminds us that the poet, not the politician, is our pilot of social consciousness. No injustice escapes his pen.”

Ewuare Osayande was the first Poet-in-Residence at Rutgers University in Camden, NJ. He went on to serve as adjunct professor in the African American Studies Department from 2005 to 2009 teaching courses on Malcolm X, the Black vote and the Black Arts Movement.

Dr. Wayne Glasker, former chairperson of the African American Studies Program at Rutgers University has called Ewuare Osayande’s work “brilliant and compelling.” He continues, “His criticism is passionate and captures the anguish and urgency of the contemporary crisis in African American life. A powerful voice in the tradition of David Walker, Frederick Douglass and Malcolm X.”

Osayande‘s convictions are infused in his life-work. As he has stated, “To violate someone because that person is female or gay or lesbian or poor or disabled or is a person of color, does not diminish that person’s humanity, rather, it diminishes your own. What matters in the end, is what we do on behalf of those who are suffering now. True freedom is experienced in the fight to dismantle all forms of oppression.” Osayande’s radical vision is rooted in the revolutionary spirit of his ancestors that fought slavery in the United States singing: “Better to live one’s life for freedom’s cause, than to live and die a slave.”

Lewis Gordon, founder of the Institute for the Study of Race and Social Thought at Temple University, has called Osayande, “Passionate, provocative, evocative, insightful and always truthful, Osayande’s work stands as one of the best examples of prophetic criticism that speaks not only to, and from, the contemporary Africana experience, but to anyone interested in the struggle for human liberation.”