WHO WE ARE
Founded around a kitchen table in 2009 by Norma E. Cantú, Celeste Guzmán Mendoza, Pablo Miguel Martínez, Deborah Paredez, and Carmen Tafolla, CantoMundo is a national poetry organization that cultivates community for Latinx poets. Through its workshops, symposia, and public readings, CantoMundo is a celebration of the worlds of song within the community, from its elders to its youth.
Each year, CantoMundo hosts an annual poetry retreat—originally modeled after Cave Canem and Kundiman—to allow space for the creation, documentation, and critical analysis of Latinx poetry. Through this annual workshop, fellows have worked alongside established Latinx poets such as Juan Felipe Herrera, Martín Espada, Ada Limón and Natalie Diaz, among others.
Since 2017, CantoMundo also co-sponsors the CantoMundo Poetry Series, an annual book award contest, with the University of Arkansas Press. Poets published through this series have received critical acclaim, including such prizes as the American Book Award, the PEN American Open Book Award, and the Kate Tufts Discovery Award.
As the only organization of its kind dedicated to poetry by the Latinx diaspora, CantoMundo is moving forward with a commitment to equitable representation of the latinidad by interrogating the colonial legacy of “Latinx” and actively addressing the term’s exclusion of Indigenous and Black and Afro Latinx writers.
Currently housed by the University of Arizona’s Poetry Center, CantoMundo’s previous sponsors include the University of Texas at Austin and Columbia University.