Rag Radio: Texas Poet Laureate Carmen Tafolla & Gregg Barrios, Prominent Poet, Playwright & Critic

Latino and Latina writers are receiving increasing recognition for their significant contribution to the literature of Texas and the nation.


Carmen Tafolla, the 2015 Poet Laureate of Texas, and prominent poet, playwright, and critic Gregg Barrios, join Thorne Dreyer in a discussion of Texas literature and the leading role being played by Latino/Latina writers and the increasing recognition of their work and contribution. The show includes live readings by both Carmen and Gregg and a discussion of and reading by U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera.

The internationally-acclaimed Carmen Tafolla was Poet Laureate of San Antonio before she became the state of Texas’ top poet. Also a storyteller, performance artist, motivational speaker, and university professor, Dr. Tafolla is known throughout the world for her moving performances and readings. The author of more than 20 books and the recipient of numerous literary awards, she was called by Rigoberto Gonzales “the Zora Neale Hurston of the Chicano Community” and by Alex Haley, “a world-class writer,” and was recognized by the National Association of Chicana and Chicano Studies for work which “gives voice to the peoples and cultures of this land.” Carmen Tafolla was honored at the 2015 Texas Book Festival, held Oct. 17-18 in Austin, and was part of the new ¡Ahora Si! Program Tent that featured Latino/a writers and related events.

Gregg Barrios, a San Antonio-based poet, playwright, filmmaker, and critic, and former book editor of the San Antonio Express-News, serves on the board of directors of the National Book Critics Circle and was elected to the prestigious Texas Institute of Letters earlier this year. Gregg moderated a panel, “The Many Faces of Texas Poetry,” at the 2015 Texas Book Festival. Barrios was a 2013 USC Annenberg Getty Fellow and has been awarded a CTG-Mark Taper Fellowship, a Ford Foundation Grant, and a 2013 Artist Foundation Grant for his theater work. A Chicano activist in the ’60s, Gregg Barrios was an original contributor to Austin’s underground newspaper, The Rag, and this is his fourth appearance on Rag Radio.

The host and producer of Rag Radio, Thorne Dreyer, is a prominent Austin-based activist and writer who was a pioneer of the ’60s underground press movement. The show’s engineer and co-producer is Tracey Schulz and the staff photographer is Roger Baker. Rag Radio is produced in the studios of KOOP 91.7-FM, an all-volunteer, cooperatively-run community radio station in Austin, Texas, in association with The Rag Blog and the New Journalism Project, a Texas 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The syndicated show is broadcast (and streamed) live Fridays, 2-3 p.m. (Central) on KOOP in Austin, and is later rebroadcast and streamed on WFTE-FM in Mt. Cobb and Scranton, PA., on Houston Pacifica’s KPFT HD-3 90.1-FM, and by KKRN, 88.5-FM in Round Mountain, CA — and is a featured podcast at Veterans Today. All Rag Radio podcasts can be found at the Internet Archive. Contact: [email protected]


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