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Monthly Archives: January 2016

REVIEW: Alison Kinney’s “Hood” Offers Lesson On The Garment That Made Headlines

In March 2012, U.S. Representative Bobby Rush stood on the House floor dressed in a gray hooded sweatshirt, one month after Trayvon Martin was shot dead in a Florida suburb. "Just because someone wears a hoodie, does not make them a hoodlum," said the Illinois Democrat. "Just because someone is a young Black male and wears a hoodie does not make them a hoodlum. . ." He was escorted off the floor and out of the chamber by the sergeant-in-arms for violating decorum. Author Alison Kinney begins her "Hood" – publishing this week -- with this telling moment. Part of the publisher Bloombury's "Object Lessons" series, "Hood" contains a definite chill as Kinney tracks the history and significance of the garment through the 15th century to the present. "We all wear hoods," Kinney writes, "but... Read More →

[VIDEO] Marlon James: We All Have A Stake In Ending Racism

Marlon James begins his 2-minute video on racism with the following question: "Are you 'non' or are you 'anti'?" Published by the Guardian and viewed more than 10 million times, the video asks viewers to grapple with their own sense of personal responsibility when it comes to dismantling white supremacy. James broke down his thoughts on non-racism vs. anti-racism when he spoke at the Cleveland City Club September 12. Here is a handy video recap of his point to share with friends: Read More →

[Roundup] Best Fiction And Nonfiction Books Of 2015

As the chair of the National Book Critics Circle's nonfiction committee, our awards manager Karen R. Long had a steady stream of captivating titles hit her doorstep every month. This week, she partnered with Cal Zunt of the Notable Books Council of the American Library Association and Fay Walker of the City Club to lead a discussion on the best books of 2015. For those unable to attend and hear her top picks in person, they're presented here, with brief commentary on why each book deserves room on your bookshelf. (Click the book covers to read more in-depth reviews.) The Book of Aron by Jim Shepard Happy Dog owner Sean Watterson studied with Shepard, whose writing he admires as much as I do. I find myself using the fateful “M” word – “masterpiece” for Shepard’s... Read More →

EVENT: “Cleveland In Print” Examines Northeast Ohio Through Toni Morrison, Langston Hughes And Harvey Pekar

  Come learn more about the Cleveland that helped shape Langston Hughes, Toni Morrison, and Harvey Pekar. Teaching Cleveland has teamed up with Literary Cleveland and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards to present "Cleveland in Print: The History and Literature of Northeast Ohio" on Thursday, January 28. The story of Cleveland in the 20th Century is one of immigrants and migrants, racial tensions, and economic stratification. Join us as we examine three works by these three Northeast Ohio writers and explore the interplay between person, place and perspective; bring a notebook or a laptop and explore your own connections as well. A light dinner will be served, and participants will receive a book, compliments of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards. "Here is a unique opportunity to reflect... Read More →
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