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Linton Kwesi Johnson (aka LKJ) (born 24 August 1952, Chapelton, Jamaica) is a UK-based dub poet. He became the second living poet, and the only black poet, to be published in the Penguin Classics series. His poetry involves the recitation of his own verse in Jamaican Patois over dub-reggae, usually written in collaboration with renowned British reggae producer/artist Dennis Bovell. His middle name 'Kwesi' is Ghanaian.
Johnson studied for a degree in sociology at Goldsmiths College in New Cross, London (graduating in 1973), which currently holds his personal papers in its archives; in 2004 he became an Honorary Visiting Professor of Middlesex University in London. In 2005 he was awarded a silver Musgrave medal from the Institute of Jamaica for distinguished eminence in the field of poetry.
While still at school he joined the British Black Panther Movement, helped to organise a poetry workshop within the movement, and developed his work with Rasta Love, a group of poets and drummers.
Most of Johnson's poetry is political, dealing mainly with the experiences of being an African-Caribbean in Britain, "Writing was a political act and poetry was a cultural weapon...", he told an interviewer in 2008. However, he has also written about other issues, such as British foreign policy or the death of anti-racist marcher Blair Peach. His most celebrated poems were written during the government of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. The poems contain graphic accounts of the alleged racist police brutality occurring at the time (cf. Sonny's Lettah). Johnson's poetry makes clever use of the unstandardised transcription of Jamaican Patois.