Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Teaching Black Power

Russell Rickford recovers a “lost 1970s” through the history of independent black schools

Russell Rickford’s history of “Pan-African Nationalist” schools, We Are an African People, is the winner of the 2016 National Book award, given by the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University of Memphis. Rickford will speak at the University of Memphis on October 19.

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Path to the Presidency

Curtis Wilkie talks with Chapter 16 about the invention of the modern presidential campaign

In The Road to Camelot, Thomas Oliphant and Curtis Wilkie tell the story of John F. Kennedy’s quest for the presidency, which started in 1956. Prior to their appearance at Novel in Memphis on October 16, Wilkie discussed the book with Chapter 16.

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A Simple, Gentle Joy

A novelist reflects on the pleasures of the Southern Festival of Books, opening today in Nashville

Every year, I’m reminded of how refreshing it is to be among folks who love the sorcery of the written word. The Southern Festival of Books draws a diverse crowd, a vast spectrum of ages and ethnicities. Some gobble up mysteries; some nip at the syllables of poetry. Some are there to share their work, some are there to support those who share their work, and all of us are there because we have fallen under the spell of what can be done with words on a page.

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Peeking Under Someone Else’s Roof

Beth Ann Fennelly brings poetry to her new memoir in essays

Beth Ann Fennelly, the multi-talented author of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, has created, yet again, a book that is wholly original, engrossing, and poignant. Heating & Cooling is a series of fifty-two micro-essays that chronicle her life as a writer, mother, and wife. Fennelly will appear at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books, held October 13-15 in Nashville, and at Burke’s Book Store in Memphis on November 7.

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The Earth Remembers

Anna-Marie McLemore weaves a tale of cursed families and forbidden love

The cursed characters in Anna-Marie McLemore’s magical-realist novel, Wild Beauty, have the power to bring plants into bloom, but the people they love are doomed to vanish. McLemore will appear at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books, held in Nashville October 13-15.

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Portal of the Years

Rodney Jones’s novel in verse, Village Prodigies, roves the lives of six childhood friends

Rodney Jones’s powerful novel in verse picks through the memories of six young men from a small Southern town. Jones will discuss Village Prodigies at the 2017 Southern Festival of Books in Nashville October 13-15.

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