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Anisfield-Wolf Authors To Close 2018 Virginia Book Festival With Panel On Racism And Reflections On Charlottesville

Coming off a successful year of literary prizes, three of the 2017 recipients of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards will reconvene for a closing panel session at the Virginia Festival of the Book.

  • Peter Ho Davies, author of The Fortunes and recipient of the 2017 Chautauqua Prize;
  • Tyehimba Jess, author of Olio and recipient of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry; and
  • Margot Lee Shetterly, author of Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race and winner of the NAACP Image Award for Nonfiction.

They will be joined by jury member Rita Dove, who will share their writing and insights about race and culture, with particular focus on the August 2017 events that took place in Charlottesville:

This conversation, titled “Writing the American Story: Diverse Voices in Distinguished Books,” will take place at a public program on Sunday, March 25, 2018, at 3:00 PM at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center. The program will feature a discussion of their work, reflections on obstacles to racial justice, and writing that helps make the American story a complete story.

“The Virginia Festival of the Book’s reputation in the literary community is par excellence, and we are honored to
join the 2018 program,” said Karen R. Long, manager of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards, which are presented by
the Cleveland Foundation. “The Nazi violence in Charlottesville last August shocked the nation, and the Anisfield-
Wolf canon – exemplary books addressing racism and diversity — is pertinent to the work ahead for all of us. This
makes the Anisfield-Wolf panel  a natural fit for the Festival, one we welcome.”

“Writing the American Story” is the official closing program of the Festival, and seeks to support and celebrate diversity while working towards understanding the invasive and structural roots of racism. This program will be free and open to the public. Following the discussion, speakers will welcome audience questions.

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