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El Jones is a poet, professor and activist living in Halifax, Nova Scotia. She was born in Wales and grew up in Winnipeg. She was Halifax's Poet Laureate from 2013 to 2015. Her book, Live From the Afrikan Resistance! published in 2014 by Roseway, an imprint of Fernwood Publishing, is a collection of poems about resisting white colonialism. In 2015, she was a resident at the International Writing Program at University of Iowa. Her work focuses on social justice issues such as feminism, prison abolition, anti-racism, and decolonization; she wrote in the Washington Post in June 2020 about "the realities of white-supremacist oppression that black people in Canada have long experienced."
Since 2016, she has co-hosted a radio show called Black Power Hour on CKDU-FM, an educational program which provides information on Black history and culture aimed at incarcerated people. Listeners from prisons call in to rap and read poetry that they have written, providing a voice to people who rarely get a wide audience. She is a contributor to the Halifax Examiner and the Huffington Post Canada. She has taught at Dalhousie University, Acadia University, Nova Scotia Community College, Saint Mary's University and Mount Saint Vincent University. In 2017, she was named the 15th Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies at Mount Saint Vincent University.
Awards & Honours
- Named a Bold Visionary in 2014 by the A Bold Vision National Leadership Conference.
- Recipient of the Dr. Allan Burnley (Rocky) Jones Individual Award at the Nova Scotia Human Rights Award (2016) for her "commitment to advancing human rights, equity and inclusion."
- Two-time National Spoken Word Champion.
- 2017/18 Poet in Residence for Poetry in Voice.
- "El Jones". Atlantic Canadian Poets' Archive. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- (HRM), Halifax Regional Municipality. "HRM Poet Laureate | Halifax.ca". www.halifax.ca. Archived from the original on 2017-03-12. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- Beaumont, Hilary. "El Jones, poetry and power". The Coast Halifax. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "Live from the Afrikan Resistance! | Quill and Quire". Quill and Quire. 2014-11-27. Retrieved 2017-11-23.
- Catharine Tunney, "El Jones, Halifax's poet laureate, moving to Iowa for work". CBC News, July 16, 2015.
- "El JONES | The International Writing Program". iwp.uiowa.edu. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- Boon, Jacob. "Black Power Hour offers inmate education over the airwaves". The Coast Halifax. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "Halifax radio show gives inmates outlet on the airwaves | Metro Halifax". metronews.ca. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "El Jones". HuffPost Canada. Retrieved 2017-10-24.
- "El Jones advocates system change for universities - Dalhousie Gazette". Dalhousie Gazette. 2016-10-14. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies". www.msvu.ca. Retrieved 2017-10-24.
- "A Bold Vision | Women's Leadership Conference". aboldvision.ca. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "Human rights award recipients honoured". The Chronicle Herald. 2016-12-09. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- Up, All Lit. "Poetry in Motion: The Spoken Word as a Tool of Liberation – El Jones". alllitup.ca. Retrieved 2017-03-11.
- "El Jones | Poetry In Voice". www.poetryinvoice.com. Retrieved 2017-10-24.
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