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Flash Exhibits in Library Special Collections

The UCLA Library Special Collections Flash Exhibit Program features in-house exhibits that are typically on display for less than two weeks.

Broadside Press: On Exhibit - November 21-29, 2016

Exhibit by Doug Johnson with assistance from Octavio Olvera and Annie Watanabe-Rocco

Image of Broadside Press Flash Exhibit

In 1965, DudleyRandall, a librarian and poet living in Detroit, decided to copyright two of his poems by publishing them as broadsides (essentially large leaflets). He dubbed these the Broadside Series, and then sought permission from other African-American poets to publish some of their works in a similar fashion. At first, Randall's project was simply to offer known works in an attractive format, but beginning with number 25, Don L. Lee's "Assassination," he concentrated more on distributing poems that had never been published previously. Over the next decade, the Broadside Series grew to ninety-two in number, and stands as one of the most important aspects of the Black Arts Movement.

In 1967, the Broadside Press published For Malcolm X, Poems on the Life and Death of Malcolm X, an anthology of texts inspired by the slain civil rights leader.

In September, 1975, a conference was held in Detroit to celebrate the Press's tenth anniversary. Broadside Memories: Poets I Have Known, served as the program for the three-day event, during which many writers came together to honor Randall's contribution to literary culture. Though the Broadside Series ended later that year, the Press continues to this day. In 2015, it merged with the Lotus Press, another pioneering Detroit publisher, to become the Broadside Lotus Press.

Image of For Black Poets Who Think Of Suicide by Etheridge Knight

Image of Assassination by Don L. Lee

Image of Poems on the Life and the Death of Malcolm X

Image of All Of Us Are All Of Us by Lucille Clifton

Image of At Bay by James A. Emanuel

Image of All I Gotta Do by Nikki Giovanni

Image of At That Moment: A Legen of Malcolm X by Raymond Patterson

Image of Black Madonna by Harold G. Lawrence

Image of The Sea-Turtle and The Shark by M.B. Tolson

Image of Broadside Memories by Dudley Randall

Image of We Real Cool by Gwendolyn Brooks

All items are available in Library Special Collections.