Kevin Powell is one of the most acclaimed political, cultural, literary, and hip-hop voices in America today. He is the author of 11 books, including Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan, and the Ghost of Dr. King: Blogs and Essays.
Kevin's latest book is the memoir of his very difficult childhood and youth, The Education of Kevin Powell: A Boy's Journey into Manhood (2015, Simon & Schuster). In 2016 he will publish a biography of Tupac Shakur, the late rapper and controversial American icon.
Kevin's writings have also appeared in CNN.com, Esquire, Ebony, The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, The Guardian, ESPN.com, and Vibe Magazine, where he worked for many years as a senior writer, interviewing public figures as different as Tupac Shakur and General Colin Powell. Kevin also routinely appears in interviews on television, radio, and in print and on the internet discussing major issues of our time.
As an activist Kevin is the president and co-founder of BK Nation, a new national organization—progressive and multicultural, and focused on matters like education, civic engagement and leadership training, heath and wellness, social media, and job and small business creation. Kevin was also a Democratic candidate for Congress in Brooklyn, New York in 2008 and 2010.
He routinely travels America and globally as a public speaker, at colleges and corporations, at various institutions, and in a wide range of diverse communities. His most recent speaking engagements include stops at Microsoft headquarters, Stanford University, the U.S. Department of Justice, the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the "March on Washington," a one-week residency at the American University in Nigeria, visiting lecture positions at Central State University and Virginia State University, and a Hip-hop Scholar-in-Residence at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture; and on behalf of the U.S. State Department, a national tour of Japan on the relevance of Dr. King's famous "I Have A Dream" speech in the 21st century.
Kevin also visited Wales in the United Kingdom to do a series of lectures and workshops on the 100th birthday of 20th century poet Dylan Thomas, and the connections between Welsh and American poetry and spoken-word traditions. Indeed, as a pop culture curator Kevin produced the very first exhibit on the history of hip-hop in America, at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, which also toured America and overseas.
As a humanitarian, Kevin's work includes local, national, and international efforts in the movement to end violence against women and girls (including a very well-regarded appearance on "The Oprah Show" highlighting domestic violence.
As an acknowledgement of Kevin's life of public service and his dedication to literature and the arts, Cornell University recently became the owner of The Kevin Powell Collection, documenting nearly 30 years of his work to date in print, photos, videos, books, handwritten notes and speeches, and select memorabilia.
- Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan, and The Ghost of Dr. King
- In The Tradition: An Anthology of Young Black Writers
- Keepin' It Real: Post-MTV Reflections On Race, Sex, and Politics
- No Sleep Till Brooklyn: New and Selected Poems
- Open Letters to America
- Someday We'll All Be Free
- Step into a World: A Global Anthology of the New Black Literature
- The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life
- Who Shot Ya? Three Decades of HipHop Photography
- Who's Gonna Take the Weight: Manhood, Race, and Power in America