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For My People ~ Margaret Walker ~ Lithographs by Elizabeth Catlett

“For the cramped bewildered years
                              we went to school to learn
                              to know the reasons why
                              and the answers to and the people who
                              and the places where and the days when,
                              in memory of the bitter hours
                              when we discovered
                              we were black and poor and small and different
                              and nobody cared and nobody wondered
                              and nobody understood . . . “

–For My People by Margaret Walker

Born in 1915 in Birmingham, Alabama, Margaret Walker is one of the most talented poets to come out of the American South and one of the most powerful voices of America. “When she speaks of and for her people, older voices are mixed with hers-‑the voices of Methodist forebears and preachers who preached the Word, the anonymous voices of many who lived and were forgotten and yet out of bondage and hope made a lasting music,” wrote Stephen Vincent Benet.

To illustrate Margaret Walker’s best‑known poem, For My People, Elizabeth Catlett has created five multi-colored lithographs. Beautiful and striking, Catlett’s images borrow from the African tradition of using form to communicate spirit and purpose.

 

  • One Volume, 18-1/2″ x 22-1/2″
  • Five lithographs by Elizabeth Catlett
  • Edition limited to four hundred numbered copies
  • Newsletter
  • Each signed by Margaret Walker and Elizabeth Catlett

Each of the poem’s ten stanzas was hand‑set in thirty‑point Albertus type, a sans‑serif face that looks as if chiseled from granite. They were letterpress printed on French‑made Arches cover paper, the same paper upon which were printed the Elizabeth Catlett lithographs. The book is bound in imported red Japanese linen over heavy boards, the box is covered in black cotton. Each book is signed by Margaret Walker and Elizabeth Catlett.  1992.  $ 3,200.

"For the boys and girls who grew in spite of these things . . . "

“For the boys and girls
who grew in spite of these things . . . “

Title Page

Title Page

"For My People walking blindly spreading joy . . ."

“For My People
walking blindly spreading joy . . .”

"For My People thronging 47th Street in Chicago and Lenox Avenue in New York . . . "

“For My People
thronging 47th Street in Chicago
and Lenox Avenue in New York . . . “

"Let a new earth rise, Let another world be born . . . "

“Let a new earth rise,
Let another world be born . . . “

"For my people everywhere singing their slave songs repeatedly . . . "

“For my people everywhere
singing their slave songs repeatedly . . . “

Colophon Page

Colophon Page

Newsletter

Newsletter