Saidiya Hartman Reading at Politics and Prose Bookstore

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“I had written two books on slavery, and writing about slavery is to be in the center of a very difficult psychic territory, and so when I started doing the research for this project, I was very hungry for beauty—and I think I discovered it here,” says Saidiya Hartman about writing her book Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments: Intimate Histories of Riotous Black Girls, Troublesome Women, and Queer Radicals (Norton, 2019), winner of the 2019 National Book Critics Circle Award in Criticism, in this 2019 reading at Politics and Prose Bookstore in Washington, D.C.

Olivia Laing on Everybody

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“I was really interested in the idea of the body as a place of imprisonment but also, the body as a place of liberation.” Olivia Laing speaks about her latest book, Everybody: A Book About Freedom (Norton, 2021), and how she addresses the themes of illness, sexual violence, and incarceration with imagery and by including historical figures of the past century in this conversation with author Maggie Nelson for the Center for Fiction.

A Celebration of Audre Lorde

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“Lorde is a towering figure in the world of letters,” says Roxane Gay in this 92Y virtual event celebrating the publication of The Selected Works of Audre Lorde (Norton, 2020), which Gay edited. Joining Gay to discuss and read Lorde’s poetry and prose are Mahogany L. Browne, Saeed Jones, and Porsha Olayiwola.

Remember

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“Remember all is in motion, is growing, is you. / Remember language comes from this.”​ In this video from the Academy of American Poets, Joy Harjo reads her poem “Remember” from her 1983 collection, She Had Some Horses. Harjo has been appointed to serve a second term as poet laureate of the United States and is the first Native American to hold the post.

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Randall Kenan and Ron Rash

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In this virtual event for Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, North Carolina, the late Randall Kenan, author of the story collection If I Had Two Wings (Norton, 2020), and Ron Rash, author of In the Valley: Stories and a Novella Based on Serena (Doubleday, 2020), read from their books and discuss growing up in the South and their writing. Kenan’s If I Had Two Wings is longlisted for the 2020 National Book Award in fiction.

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Richard Powers on The Overstory

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“We like to think about people and nature as two separate things,” says Richard Powers speaking about his Pulitzer Prize–winning novel, The Overstory (Norton, 2018), in this PBS NewsHour interview. “This book is precisely a book that challenges that notion of human separatism.” For more Powers, read “A Talk in the Woods: Barbara Kingsolver and Richard Powers” from the November/December 2018 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Richard Powers and Barbara Kingsolver

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“You don’t need a lot of sensitivity or soul to feel moved by a redwood forest,” says Richard Powers about the origins of his Pulitzer Prize–winning novel, The Overstory (Norton, 2018). In this 92nd Street Y video, Powers joins Barbara Kingsolver, author of the novel Unsheltered (HarperCollins, 2018), for a reading and conversation with Kevin Larimer, editor in chief of Poets & Writers Magazine. The authors were featured in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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