To celebrate Walt Whitman’s 200th birthday, UCLA Writing Programs is presenting “Whitmania​,” a variety of cultural events that will honor one of the United States’ most well-known poets.

Whitman is often described as the father of free verse and America’s first poet of democracy. The hallmarks of his work align with some of UCLA’s values, like community engagement for the greater good. “Whitmania” will bring together UCLA faculty and students, as well as guests from as far as New York City and the larger Los Angeles community, in a series of interdisciplinary arts and humanities events. The program’s performances, readings and workshops will be held in the spring and fall and are free of charge.

Saturday, May 18: “Song of Myself” marathon reading at UCLA Alumni Day at top of Janss Steps, noon to 3 p.m.

Friday, May 24: “Whitmanic Explorations of Self and Community,” featuring original research and creative work presented by students in the writing program at UCLA Undergraduate Research Week in ​the Powell Library rotunda, 10 a.m. to noon.

Thursday, May 30 through Friday, May 31: Celebrate Whitman’s birthday with poetry pop-ups and book giveaways around UCLA.

Friday, May 31: “Ecos del Gran Viejo: Latin American Poets Sing Walt Whitman,” a bilingual reading of works by Latin American writers, Powell Library rotunda, 2 to 4 p.m.

Sunday, June 2: “Daughters of Whitman” Womxn literary and performing artists explore Whitman’s Legacy at Beyond Baroque in Santa Monica, 5 to 8 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 15: “Live Oak, With Moss” book talk featuring Caldecott Medal-winner, Brian Selznick, and NYU-based Whitman scholar, Karen Karbiener.