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The LHCPR Mission

In addition to its annual poetry readings, the LHCPR committee of organizers are committed to:

  • Introducing to the Poet Laureate of Harlem, Langston Hughes, through celebratory public sharing and performance of his work

  • Being the torch bearer in New England for Hughes and his important contributions to American history, culture, and civic philosophy

  • Raising awareness to all about the impact of Hughes then and now through a critical lens inspired by his life and works 

  • Teaching curriculum about Hughes to younger generations and showcase the lessons learned with youth events

  • Fostering community with Hughes' work as a natural conduit for engaged conversation and deep consideration

Excerpt from "Harlem Night Song" by Langston Hughes

Let us roam the night together

Pamphlets for the 22nd Annual Langston Hughes Community Poetry Reading

Our History

The LHCPR was the first national event organized with a mission to carry the legacy of Langston Hughes within a community context. The reading occupies an important place and history within the Rhode Island community since 1985. In its early stages, the confluence was first conceived as an art center hosted at the OIC, eventually formalizing and growing into the Langston Hughes Center for the Arts and Education (1985-2002) under the leadership of Anne Edmonds Clanton.


A new committee of dedicated Rhode Island and Southeastern New England representatives has managed the LHCPR since 2015. The community readings event, the flagship program of LHCPR, are held at the Providence Public Library and prior to that, the RISD Museum, both in downtown Providence. The organization has been consistently female and black led since 1985.

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