Thulani Davis
Published Work
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Buddhist Practice


My Confederate Kinfolk, Basic Books Civitas, 2006

Amistad, libretto, Lyric Opera of Chicago, 1997

Maker of Saints, a novel, Scribner, 1996

Book-of-the-Month Club selection; 1997 American Book Award, Before Columbus Foundation

Malcolm X: The Great Photographs, Stewart,Tabori & Chang, 1993

Book-of-the-Month Club selection; American Institute of Graphic Arts Award

1959, a novel, Grove Weidenfeld, 1992

Book-of-the-Month Club featured alternate; LA Times Book Award nominee; American Library Association Book of the Year nominee

Playing the Changes, poetry, Wesleyan University Press, 1985

X, The Life and Times of Malcolm X, libretto, Nani Press, 1986

All the Renegade Ghosts Rise, poetry, Anemone Press, 1978

Poetry, plays, and articles in over 30 anthologies.

Maker of Saints, Co-producer, Screenwriter, DCI Productions, 2010 

Paid in Full, Miramax, 2002, Screenwriter

The Sojourner Truth Washing Society, work-in-progress, 2010

The Souls of Black Folk, Adaptation for Five Actors, National Black Arts Festival, 2003

Everybody's Ruby: Story of a Murder in Florida, Kenny Leon, director, New York Shakespeare Festival, 1999

Ava & Cat in Mexico, Staged Reading, McCarter Theater, Princeton, 1994

Adaptation, Brecht's The Caucasian Chalk Circle, George C. Wolfe, director, New York Shakespeare Festival, 1990

Paint, Staged Reading, Basement Workshop, New York, 1982

Shadow & Veil, w/ Ntozake Shange, Jessica Hagedorn, Laurie Carlos, et. al., New Heritage Theater, New York, 1982

Sweet Talk and Stray Desires, one-woman show, Chelsea Westside Theater Center, New York, 1979

Where the Mississippi Meets the Amazon, w/ Shange &Hagedorn, Oz Scott, director, NY Shakespeare Festival, 1977

Dark Passages, text, multimedia documentary oratoria on the internment of Japanese Americans, Miya Masaoka, composer. String quartet, samples, Buddhist chants, testimony from former internees and resisters, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, 1998.

Amistad, an opera, libretto, Anthony Davis, composer, full length work for orchestra and double chorus, George C. Wolfe, director, Dennis Russell Davies, conductor, World Premiere, Lyric Opera of Chicago, 1997

A Woman Unadorned, text, Bernadette Speach, composer, 30 minute work, piano & spoken word, Lincoln Center, 1994

Baobab Four, text, Bernadette Speach, composer, 30 minute work for six musicians and two voices, P.S. 122, 1994

The E. & O. Line, an electronic opera, libretto, Anne LeBaron, composer, full length work, University of the District of Columbia; Carter Barron Amphitheater, D.C., 1989

X, The Life and Times of Malcolm X, an opera, libretto, Anthony Davis, composer, full length opera, commissioned by The Kitchen (NYC), World Premiere, New York City Opera, 1986

X-cerpts, A. Davis, composer, full length work for chamber orchestra and four singers, San Francisco Arts Festival, 1987

Steppin' Other Shores, text, Joseph Jarman, composer, full length work, music, spoken word & dance, New Music America;The Kitchen, 1983

See Tee's New Blues, full length work, spoken word & piano, Anthony Davis, composer, The Kitchen, 1982


I'll Make Me a World: Black Creative Minds in the 20th Century, Concept Originator & Story Editor, Blackside, PBS series, 1999, winner of a George Foster Peabody award

W. E. B. DuBois: A Biography in Four Voices, Writer & Narrator, Louis Massiah, producer & director, Toronto Film Festival; PBS, 1996

Thulani Davis Asks, 'Why Howard Beach?' writer & narrator, Paper Tiger TV, 1987; American Film Institute Video Festival,1987; First Place, Howard University Communications Awards, 1988

Thulani, writer & subject, Doris Chase, producer & director, 1984; Berlin Festival, 1986; Real Art Ways Video Festival, Special Award,1985

Reflections, by Bernadette Speach, composer, spoken word performance, Mode Records, 2002

The Musical Railism of Anne LeBaron, lyrics, Mode Records, 1998

Songposts, Vol. 1, lyrics, Anne LeBaron, composer, Word of Mouth Music, 1991

Without Borders, by Bernadette Speach, composer, spoken word performance, Mode Records, 1989

Fanfare for the Warriors, four-part radio documentary, co-producer, scriptwriter, NPR,1985, First Place in Radio, National Association of Black Journalists


Inaugural Fellow, The Leon Levy Center for Biography, City University of New York Graduate Center, 2008-2009

Fellow, The Newington-Cropsey Foundation Academy of Art, 2007-2008

Fellow, The Charles H. Revson Fellows Program on the Future of the City of New York at Columbia University, 2003-2004

Declared an Admiral of The Great Navy of the State of Nebraska by the Governor of Nebraska, 2004

The New York Coalition of One Hundred Black Women, First Annual Legacies Award, for Achieving Unparalled Excellence in the Arts, 2003

Induction in the Black Writers Hall of Fame, 1998

The Ralph Metcalfe Chair, Marquette University, Milwaukee, 1998

The Paul Robeson Cultural Democracy Award, The Chicago Center for Arts Policy, 1998

David Randolph Distinguished Artist-in-Residence, The New School, NY, 1998

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Artist-in-residence, 1996

Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Writers Award, 1996-1999

PEW National Theatre Artist Residency Grant, 1993-95

Grammy Award, Best Album Notes, Aretha Franklin, "The Atlantic Recordings", 1993, First woman to win in category

Grammy Nomination, Best New Work, Classical, "X, The Life & Times...," 1993

Chicago Humanities Festival Award, 1992

New York Foundation for the Arts, The Gregory Millard Fellowship Award, Fiction, 1988

Manhattan Borough President's Awards, Excellence in the Arts &Literature, 1987

New York State Council on the Arts, Writer in Residency Award, 1987

The Fannie Lou Hamer Award, Medgar Evers College, Women's Center, 1987


For most articles written since 1996,

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