The International Writers Guild Inc. is a collection of renowned, Michigan-based artists that collectively have performed throughout the country. Approaching spoken word with an unapologetic Russell Simmons, “Mos Def Poetry” style of storytelling, and led by Black Ice, a 5-time Mos Def Poet, these artists are best known for their honest, unapologetic, and original spoken word poetry, which centers around the principles of social consciousness, scholarship, diversity, love, community action, and education.
The CEO and co-founder of the International Writers Guild Inc., Lamar “The Legendary Black Ice” Manson is a Tony, Emmy, and Peabody award winning artist. He is credited with being a major pioneer of art in this millennium, as he has turned spoken word into a powerful mainstream art form. Today, his work is referenced across a wide range of publications, and is also studied in high school curricula and in course studies at Ivy League Universities. Further pursuing his passion for teaching and inspiring the world through poetry, Manson leads The IWG today with the goal to educate and empower communities mentally and spiritually through the power of spoken word.
The mission of The International Writers Guild Inc. is to create and promote an atmosphere that is conducive to the political, cultural, social, spiritual, and educational growth of our audiences nationally through spoken word. We will conceptualize and perform socially conscious events in order to fulfill this mission, and to uphold our three pillars of creating community change: to educate and enlighten, to empower disenfranchised communities, and to inspire unity. Each individual pillar is defined as follows:
(1) Educating and Enlightening
Over the past 10 years, the public education system budget has continuously reduced. According to the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), out of 34 countries, the U.S. population ranks 27th in math, 17th in reading, and 20th in science.
Because of the shortcomings in the public education system, we, The IWG recognize the responsibility to step in as artists. We perform spoken word to educate the youth in an engaging and relatable way, in order to serve as a catalyst for conversations and dialogues that center around policy change and other tangible systemic actions to promote education reform.
(2) Empowering Disenfranchised Communities
From using our voices to support gender, sex, and race equality, to spreading awareness of police brutality and poverty, The IWG addresses social issues in a constructive way to stimulate critical conversations. Our head-on approach to spoken word keeps our audiences engaged and leaves them inspired to work towards attaining sustainable changes for themselves and their communities.
(3) Inspiring Unity
As humans, biologically, we are nearly 99% similar.
Thus, outside the veils of racism, classism, cultural differences, and social constructs, we are all much more alike than different. As a result, The IWG chooses to celebrate and highlight what we collectively share with our audiences, while also appreciating our differences in ideology and identity, in order to build coalitions and unify communities beyond all boundaries.