Lillian Allen - bio

Lillian Allen
The creative and multidimensional Lillian Allen has enlivened the OCAD community since 1992. Allen, whose poetry is used in university curricula across Canada, is internationally acclaimed as an originator of the genre of dub poetry —a form of oral literature changed with rhythm and political ideas. She also writes plays and short fiction, produces films and makes award-winning recordings.

In addition, Allen teaches creative writing in OCAD’s Faculty of Liberal Studies, inspiring students with her passion and commitment to advocacy on world issues.

Known for her strategic views on cultural diversity, Allen is a consultant and advisor to governments, organizations and community groups. As an executive member of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, Allen helps to formulate Canada’s input into such initiatives as the World Summit on the Information Society. Allen has received many citations and arts awards, including two Junos for her recordings, the Canadian Congress of Black Women award for contributions to “black culture in particular and Canadian culture in general” and the City of Toronto and the Toronto Arts Foundation Margo Bindhardt award for “significantly impacting the arts in Toronto through leadership and vision in creative work and cultural activism.”

In 2003, Allen spearheaded the founding of the Dub Poets Collective and instigated the 2004 International Dub Poetry Festival (DPF04) in Toronto. Also in 2004, she hosted the very successful CBC Radio poetry program, Wordbeat. As a tribute to her cultural contributions to community development, the City of Toronto lauded Lillian Allen with its 2004 Access, Equity and Human Rights William P. Hubbard Award. Instead of resting on her laurels, Lillian is still very much a dub poetry campaigner. The 2005 International Dub Poetry Festvial is her next big project as she keeps on culture-jamming on the frontlines.

Printed Works:

Publications by Lillian Allen include:

Psychic Unrest
Women Do This Every Day;
Selected Poetry of Lillian Allen;
Why Me
Nothing But a Hero


Revolutionary Tea Party;
Conditions Critical
Freedom and Dance



coming soon



Critical Work on the Artist
coming soon





coming soon




Freedom and Dance



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Dub Poets Collective
805 St. Clair Avenue W.
2nd Floor
Toronto, Ontario
, Canada
M6C 1B9
phone: (416) 598-4932
fax (416) 598-5345





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