Akila Worksongs

A Personal Appeal from Susan L. Taylor
in Support of Third World Press

I am reaching out to you on behalf of one of the most honorable people I know, a man whose work has elevated and encouraged our community for more than 40 years, Haki Madhubuti.

In 1967 Haki (those of us who came of age in the 60's discovered him then as poet Don L. Lee) founded Third World Press, the renowned book publishing company that has provided a place for our voices for two generations.

Third World Press (TWP) alumnae include Poet Laureate and first African American Pulitzer Prize winner Gwendolyn Brooks, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Sonia Sanchez, Amiri Baraka, Derrick Bell, Julianne Malveaux, Chancellor Williams and John Henrik Clarke among others. Tavis Smiley's best-selling The Covenant With Black America was published by TWP. As difficult as it is to fathom, there were no other outlets for the work of many powerful thinkers TWP has published.

The role that Haki Madhubuti and Third World Press have played has been singular and seminal. Today they have an urgent need. The downturn in the economy has hit the press particularly hard. In recent years we have seen the erosion and subsequent disappearance of independent Black bookstores. We cannot now take for granted or let fade the one progressive publishing house that has told our story when no others would. Our love and support are the answer.

The Third World Press family is restructuring and repositioning itself to be competitive with mainstream publishing houses. This capacity-building effort urgently needs your financial support.

Join my husband, Khephra, and me in ensuring the survival of this vital institution. The critical need is to raise $500,000 by the end of the month. We can do this! Khephra and I have donated and are also committed to serving on TWP's advisory board and bringing new writers to the publishing house. From my heart to yours, I'm asking you to send a lifeline to Haki and the TWP family. I'm asking you to make a financial contribution that matches the best of your intentions and the depth of your love and respect for the griots and great voices TWP has brought us over the years.

Let us take care of our own. Please get the word out to your network via email, Facebook, blog and Twitter.

Send your contribution today to:
Third World Press
P.O. Box 19730
7822 South Dobson Avenue
Chicago, IL 60619

You can also donate securely online via PayPal, click HERE.

To learn more about TWP, you can visit their Web site at www.thirdworldpressinc.com
More love,

Susan L. Taylor