Schomburg Center Literary Festival: Schomburg Center Literary Festival 2023

Date and Time
Saturday, June 17, 2023, 11:30 AM - 6 PM
End times are approximate. Events may end early or late.


Fully accessible to wheelchairs
Free Event
Event Details

The logo is set against a purple background. On the left side, an abstract design. On the right, there are the words, Schomburg Center Literary Festival. Below is the Center’s logo is white.

Artwork: Generational Wealth, 2023 by Ernest A. Ford


The Schomburg Center Literary Festival celebrates authors of African descent and champions literacy and books across genres to amplify Black history and culture. Festival programming features some of the most talented writers and influential figures in culture today. The festival is built on the foundation created by Arturo Schomburg–encouraging freedom of thought, the relentless pursuit of Black history, and the engagement of our imagination towards our collective freedom.

This year marks its fifth year and will reconvene communities of book lovers to interact with their favorite authors in Harlem, USA. The festival hosts a marketplace of local organizations and vendors, NYPL mobile library, and programs for all ages.

Readings, panel discussions, and workshops at the event range from prose to poetry, comic books to young adult novels, fiction and nonfiction.


The festival will take place in Schomburg’s landmark building at 515 Malcolm X Boulevard, as well as outdoors on 135th Street between Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevards, on stage named after Adam Clayton Powell and Zora Neale Hurston.





11:30 AM

Literacy is Generational Wealth

Langston Hughes Auditorium | Schomburg Center (INDOOR)

The Schomburg Center Literary Festival begins with an opening procession and welcome for the 5th annual festival, themed Literacy is Generational Wealth. The keynote conversation features Award-winning author and cultural critic Sarah Ladipo Manyika and writer and actress Anna Deavere Smith discussing Between Starshine and Clay: Conversations from the African Diaspora. Sarah takes us on a remarkable journey across contemporary cultural and political landscapes as she speaks with some of the most distinguished Black thinkers of our times, including Nobel Laureates Toni Morrison and Wole Soyinka, and civic leaders first lady Michelle Obama and Senator Cory Booker.

Woke Baby! Festival

135th Street - Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. STAGE (OUTDOOR)

Children’s Author Readings, Live Music, Bookmark Making, and more Powered by Woke Baby!

Stay tuned! More information about our schedule will be available later this month. Check out last year's schedule and visit our website for the most up to date information:


The 2023 Schomburg Center Literary Festival is powered by Puma.  In black lettering against a white background, the name of the company Puma. A puma is leaping in mid-air on the right side.

 Major support is provided by Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation.  In blue lettering against a white background, there is the name of the company Deutsche Bank.

PUBLIC NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER By registering for this event, you are acknowledging that an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. By attending an in-person program at The New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and agree not to hold The New York Public Library, its Trustees, officers, agent and employees liable for any illness or injury. If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or suspect you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, please stay home.

AUDIO/VIDEO RECORDING Programs are photographed and recorded by the Schomburg Center. Attending this event indicates your consent to being filmed/photographed and your consent to the use of your recorded image for any all purposes of the New York Public Library.

PRESS Please send all press inquiries (photo, video, interviews, audio-recording, etc) at least 24-hours before the day of the program to Leah Drayton at

Please note that professional video recordings are prohibited without expressed consent.

Assistive Listening and ASL
ASL interpretation and real-time (CART) captioning available upon request. Please submit your request at least two weeks in advance by emailing