Slideshow Image for Poetry as Activism in Conversation with Chicory

About This Exhibition:

In partnership with the Mellon-funded Poetry as Activism Project, the University of Delaware Library, Museums and Press will host the traveling exhibition Soul of the Butterfly: Chicory Magazine and Baltimore’s Black Arts Activism, on view in Room 116 of Morris Library from February 22 through March 25, 2024. The exhibition Poetry as Activism in Conversation with Chicory will be on view in conjunction with the traveling exhibition in the Information Room of Morris Library.

Soul of the Butterfly explores the relationship between poetry and activism in Baltimore, Maryland, and offers the UD community the opportunity to consider this relationship in a Mid-Atlantic regional context.

As shared by the Pratt Library, the exhibition, curated by Mary Rizzo and the Chicory Revitalization Project, “uses Chicory [magazine] to tell the story of how Black artist-activists in Baltimore have been making change since the 1960s. Featuring poetry, artwork, and photos, it reminds us why the Baltimore Afro-American called Chicory ‘the most authentic microphone of Black folks talking ever devised.’” All issues of Chicory magazine are available via Digital Maryland. For more information about Chicory, watch a short video created by the Chicory Revitalization Project.

Poetry as Activism in Conversation with Chicory showcases how artist-activists used their works as well as community publishing to organize for change. This includes works by Chicory editors Sam Cornish and Melvin Edward Brown published by Baltimore-based publishing houses. The exhibition, curated by Petra Clark and Jeannette Schollaert, includes items from Special Collections selected for digitization as part of the Poetry as Activism Project.

For more resources connecting Soul of the Butterfly to the Poetry as Activism Project, contact Jeannette Schollaert at


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