Chapter 16
A Community of Tennessee Writers, Readers & Passersby

Aram Goudsouzian

The Ghost Hunter

Investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell cracks cold cases from the civil rights movement

Race Against Time, written in the gripping style of a crime thriller, describes how crusading investigative reporter Jerry Mitchell helped to deliver justice in long-ago murders of civil rights activists. Mitchell will speak about his book at Novel in Memphis on February 12 and at Parnassus Books in Nashville on February 24

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The Challenge of Antiracism

Historian Ibram X. Kendi confronts our racist culture — and looks inward

In How to Be an Antiracist, historian Ibram Kendi argues that defeating racism is a conscious choice that requires thoughtfulness and discipline. Kendi will discuss the book at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis on October 23 and at the University of Memphis on October 24.

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Courting Jim Crow

Steve Luxenberg chronicles the characters behind Plessy v. Ferguson, the Supreme Court decision that sanctioned racial segregation

In Separate, Steve Luxenberg provides a rich, multi-layered narrative of race in 19th-century America, culminating with the landmark Plessy v. Ferguson case. Luxenberg will discuss Separate at the Southern Festival of Books, held in Nashville on October 11-13.

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Race, Rights, and Reconstruction

Daniel Brook chronicles the shifting status of mixed-race elites in the 19th-century South

In The Accident of Color, Daniel Brook tells the revealing story of the mixed-race elite in Charleston and New Orleans during the 19th century. Brook will appear at Novel in Memphis on June 27 at 6:00 p.m.  

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The Ball is Your Heart

Kwame Alexander talks with Chapter 16 about basketball, family, and the rules of life

In this interview, which first appeared at Chapter 16 in 2015, Kwame Alexander reflects on basketball, music, political consciousness, and the challenges and rewards of writing. Alexander will appear at the Benjamin L. Hooks Library in Memphis on April 22 and at Lipscomb University in Nashville on April 23. 

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Europe’s Exodus

Tara Zahra’s The Great Departure gives a sweeping history of European migration to the U.S.

In The Great Departure, Tara Zahra chronicles the complicated meanings of European migration to the United States. The MacArthur Fellow will speak on March 14 at the University of Memphis.

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