Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Clay Risen

The Birth of Black Power

Historian Aram Goudsouzian talks with Chapter 16 about the fiftieth anniversary of James Meredith’s March Against Fear

June 2, 2016 As Aram Goudsouzian recounts in his book Down to the Crossroads, the Meredith March Against Fear represented a crucial turning point in civil-rights history. In commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of the march, Goudsouzian will discuss Down to the Crossroads at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis on June 9, 2016, at 6 p.m.

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A Literary Horror Story

The late William Gay’s incomplete ghost story, Little Sister Death, has just been published

October 30, 2014 When Hohenwald writer William Gay died in 2012, he left behind an incomplete draft of a novel called Little Sister Death. The book is a fictional retelling of the Bell Witch legend, which revolves around a haunted farmstead near Adams, Tennessee, northeast of Nashville. Little Sister Death has just been published by Dzanc Books.

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When Brotherhood Isn’t

Barry Moser’s memoir about growing up in Chattanooga tackles hard questions of race and family

October 21, 2015 On the first page of his new memoir about growing up with his brother in postwar Chattanooga, the artist Barry Moser makes it clear that this won’t be the usual story of a Southern boyhood, full of swimming holes and fishing poles: “Without opportunity to be otherwise,” he writes, “Tommy and I were racists.” Moser will discuss We Were Brothers at Parnassus Books in Nashville on October 26, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

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The Fabric of Our Economy

Sven Beckert talks with Chapter 16 about how the history of cotton explains the origin of modern capitalism

September 11, 2014 History is often told through the stories of wars, famines, and presidents, but as Harvard historian Sven Beckert shows in his new book, it can also be told through a simple, everyday crop: cotton. Beckert will discuss Empire of Cotton at Rhodes College in Memphis on September 17, 2015, at 6 p.m.

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A Painful History Hidden in Plain Sight

Kristen Green’s new memoir tells the shameful story of Prince Edward County’s response to integration

August 25, 2015 Kristen Green’s new book is a hybrid approach—part personal history and part scholarly research—to the decision to block integration in Prince Edward County, Virginia, by shutting down the school system. Green will discuss Something Must Be Done About Prince Edward County at the Southern Festival of Books, held in Nashville October 9-11, 2015.

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Tell About the South

Harrison Scott Key’s new memoir attempts to reconcile the man he is with the man he sought to escape—his father

June 11, 2015 In a new memoir, Harrison Scott Key recalls his father’s rage against his boss, and books, and the Boy Scouts, and any sign of civilization that he stumbled across. Key will discuss The World’s Largest Man at The Booksellers at Laurelwood in Memphis on June 15, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.

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