Emma Lazarus Project: Poetry Contest

Poetry Contest

Just as Emma responded to the issues by writing a poem that addressed American identity, we invite you to write your own poem that speaks to your vision of America.

Beginning in September 2019, submissions to the nation-wide poetry contest will be accepted on a rolling basis. The poetry contest deadline has been extended to August 15, 2020. Winners will be announced in October of 2020.

If you could write a poem for the Statue of Liberty today, what would it say?

Submit Your Poem

In the Classroom

Emma’s story shows how even in complicated times, people can engage civically. Through engaging with this history, students will be prepared to develop their own voices on issues of the day. The culminating activity of The Emma Lazarus Project curriculum is to provide students with their own pedestal to share their thoughts and beliefs. The American Jewish Historical Society is hosting a National Poetry contest, which asks students to imagine themselves as 21st century Emma, following the prompt: “If you could write a poem for the Statue of Liberty today, what would it say?”

Winners in each category will receive a cash prize of $1,000 and be featured in an upcoming AJHS Film and publication. All submission will be preserved in the AJHS Archive alongside the collection of Emma Lazarus.

Download the Poetry Contest Guidelines