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DC Reads How the Word is Passed graphic

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DC Reads: How the Word is Passed

An author talk with Clint Smith

2022-09-29 18:30:00 2022-09-29 20:00:00 America/New_York DC Reads: How the Word is Passed Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library - Central Library - Auditorium

Thursday, September 29
6:30pm - 8:00pm

Add to Calendar 2022-09-29 18:30:00 2022-09-29 20:00:00 America/New_York DC Reads: How the Word is Passed A conversation with Clint Smith, author of our DC Reads title How the Word is Passed. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library - Central Library - Auditorium

A conversation with Clint Smith, author of our DC Reads title How the Word is Passed.

Join us for a special conversation with Clint Smith to discuss his National Book Critics Circle Award-winning book How the Word is Passed, our 2022 DC Reads title. In conversation with Hannah Oliver Depp of Loyalty Bookstores, Smith will discuss his book exploring the legacy of slavery in U.S. landmarks and monuments.

Following the conversation, books will be available for sale and signing from Loyalty Bookstores. 

About the book:

Beginning in his own hometown of New Orleans, Clint Smith leads the reader through an unforgettable tour of monuments and landmarks—those that are honest about the past and those that are not—that offer an intergenerational story of how slavery has been central in shaping our nation’s collective history, and ourselves.

It is the story of the Monticello Plantation in Virginia, the estate where Thomas Jefferson wrote letters espousing the urgent need for liberty while enslaving over 400 people on the premises. It is the story of the Whitney Plantation, one of the only former plantations devoted to preserving the experience of the enslaved people whose lives and work sustained it. It is the story of Angola, a former plantation-turned maximum security prison in Louisiana that is filled with Black men who work across the 18,000-acre land for virtually no pay. And it is the story of Blandford Cemetery, the final resting place of tens of thousands of Confederate soldiers.

In a deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, How the Word Is Passed illustrates how some of our country’s most essential stories are hidden in plain view-whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods—like downtown Manhattan—on which the brutal history of the trade in enslaved men, women and children has been deeply imprinted.

Informed by scholarship and brought alive by the story of people living today, Clint Smith’s debut work of nonfiction is a landmark work of reflection and insight that offers a new understanding of the hopeful role that memory and history can play in making sense of our country and how it has come to be.
 
 
 

About the author:

Clint Smith

Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. He is the author of the narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, which was a #1 New York Times bestseller, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction, the Hillman Prize for Book Journalism, the Stowe Prize, and selected by the New York Times as one of the 10 Best Books of 2021. He is also the author of the poetry collection Counting Descent, which won the 2017 Literary Award for Best Poetry Book from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award.

Clint has received fellowships from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, New America, the Emerson Collective, the Art For Justice Fund, Cave Canem, and the National Science Foundation. His essays, poems, and scholarly writing have been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The New Republic, Poetry Magazine, The Paris Review, the Harvard Educational Review, and elsewhere. He is a former National Poetry Slam champion and a recipient of the Jerome J. Shestack Prize from the American Poetry Review.

Previously, Clint taught high school English in Prince George’s County, Maryland where he was named the Christine D. Sarbanes Teacher of the Year by the Maryland Humanities Council. He is the host of the YouTube series Crash Course Black American History.

Clint received his B.A. in English from Davidson College and his Ph.D. in Education from Harvard University. Born and raised in New Orleans, he currently lives in Maryland with his wife and their two children.

About Hannah Oliver Depp:

Hannah Oliver Depp

Hannah Oliver Depp is the owner of Loyalty Bookstores in Petworth, DC and Silver Spring, MD. Loyalty serves all readers as an intersectional feminist bookstore and programming space. She holds a Masters in English from American University. Oliver Depp is a founding member of the American Booksellers Association’s Committee on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and serves on the boards of Bookshop.org, An Open Book Foundation, and the New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association.

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

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AGE GROUP: | Seniors | Adults | 13 - 19 Years Old (Teens) |

EVENT TYPE: | DC Reads | Author Talk |

TAGS: | |

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