A TRULY GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE
Since 2003 Dr. Flanagan has served as a Cultural Ambassador for the United States Department of State. Her most recent service was in Romania, February 25 to March 4, 2023 during which she lectured at educational institutions about African American and Women’s histories and performed literary selections from her own work and that of other African American writers. She also engaged in conversations with Romanian women writers in Bucharest, Brasov, and Timisoara.
In 2005, she was the first American writer to be sent on a cultural mission to Libya in 25 years. Her visit opened doors to other American cultural missions.
Flanagan has served in Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Chile, Kuwait, Tajikistan, Morocco, Tunisia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Chad, Panama, India, and the Czech Republic.
In addition to lectures on African American, Caribbean, and World Literatures, Flanagan performs her work, and engages in dialogue with citizens, students, professors, creative artists, and journalists in these diverse countries on such subjects as U.S. public policies, diversity, politics and race, and the achievement of success in hostile environments.
"In Brenda Flanagan's novel, You Alone Are Dancing, there's talk and talk, the life-long dance of talk--it's lyrical, raucous, sorrowful, vibrant, inventive. And there you are, on the island, in the midst and mix of it all. What the best musicians do with wood and brass and air, Brenda Flanagan does with words--she gives them voice and life."
–Janet Kauffman, author of Places in the World a Woman Could Walk
[In Praise of Island Women and Other Crimes]
“Brenda Flanagan joins Marshall, Danticat, and Boadiba . . . Caribbean American women who've done so much to add new colors and rhythms to an American prose that can often be dull and grey. Whether she is writing about an elderly woman who has outlived her children, or penning a brilliant meditation on the word 'blight'—her stories, in particular ‘The Green Card’ about the quest of Loris to obtain American citizenship—will become American classics.”
–Ishmael Reed, writer