Thursday, October 26, 2017
More Than a Single Story is a series of panel discussions/community conversations inspired by Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s powerful TED talk, The Danger of a Single Story, which shows how stereotypes are fostered when we treat one story of a people as their only story. Moderated by Carolyn Holbrook, the panels invite writers of color and indigenous writers to discuss issues of importance to them in their own words.
This conversation at Wisdom Ways will probe where and how these writers find strength and courage in our difficult times. Mother Teresa once said “I do not agree with the big way of doing things. To us, what matters is an individual.” These women will explore large and small ways they find courage when they need it, and ways that they have given courage to others, often while struggling to maintain their own center.
Carolyn Holbrook is founder and former Executive/Artistic Director of SASE: The Write Place. She is a widely published writer whose essays are included in A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota and Blues Vision: African American Writing from Minnesota. She teaches Creative Writing at Hamline University and was named one of 50 of the most inspiring and accomplished leaders in Minnesota over the age of 50 by AARP and Pollen Midwest.
Lana Barkawi is executive and artistic director of Mizna and executive editor of its literary journal, Mizna: Prose, Poetry, and Art Exploring Arab America. Lana’s interest in fostering a local, national, and international space for Arab art and community has brought Mizna in partnership with many artists and organizations to present creative work that creates change. She has served on many grant panels and boards, including the board of St. Paul’s Cultural STAR Program.
Arleta Little is an arts program officer and Director of Artist Fellowships at the McKnight Foundation. She served for nearly a decade as the executive director of the Givens Foundation for African American Literature, a literary arts organization in Minneapolis dedicated to advancing and celebrating African American literature and writers. A poet and writer, she was most recently published in Blues Vision: African American Writing from Minnesota.
Interdisciplinary performance artist and Xicana feminist scholar Jessica Lopez Lyman, PhD, is interested in how People of Color create alternative spaces to heal and imagine new worlds. Her manuscript Midwest Mujeres: Chicana/Latina Performance explores racialized and gendered geographies of urban Minnesota. A Naked Stages Fellow at the Pillsbury House Theatre, she is a Postdoctoral Associate at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies where she will join the faculty in 2019.
Poet, community artist activist and educator Anh-Hoa Thi Nguyen was born in Saigon and grew up in St. Paul. An MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College in Oakland, California, she has performed her work in the Bay Area and Twin Cities and has been published in many journals and anthologies, including Troubling Borders: An Anthology of Art and Literature by Southeast Asian Women in the Diaspora. She is the founder of Pomelo Press, and creates self-published and hand bound artist’s books.
Susan Power is the author of The Grass Dancer (1995 PEN/Hemingway prize), Roofwalker (2002 Milkweed National Fiction Prize), and Sacred Wilderness. Her short stories and essays have been widely published in journals, magazines and anthologies including The Best American Short Stories of 1993 and Granta. An enrolled member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, born and raised in Chicago, she is a graduate of Harvard Law School and the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop who makes her home in St. Paul.
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