Crazy Brave

The Book

Each year, first-year students at Connecticut College engage in a shared summer reading along with their faculty, staff, and student advisers. The 2020 selections in Crazy Brave, a memoir by two-time US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo.

Crazy Brave evokes the terrain and texture of Harjo’s birthplace in the Muscogee Creek Nation, as well as the mythology of her ancestors, tracing her story from childhood in an Oklahoma town to the discovery of her poetic voice as a young adult. Suffering the multiple indignities of racism, poverty, and abuse, Harjo circumvented despair by embracing art, music, and activism. Crazy Brave confronts the long American history of injustice against indigenous peoples, while affirming the power of art to liberate and heal.

Please visit Additional Resources to read book reviews about Crazy Brave and videos of interviews with the author.


Author Joy Harjo

The Author

Author Joy Harjo is the first Native American to be named US Poet Laureate. She is the winner of the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize and the PEN USA Literary Award for Nonfiction and the American Book Award.  Her nine books of poetry include An American Sunrise, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings, How We Became Human: New and Selected Poems, and She Had Some Horses. Click here to learn more about Joy Harjo.

As part of the One Book, One Region initiative of New London County, author Joy Harjo will participate in a live event for the campus to discuss her work early in the fall 2020 semester.