NEGRO is a docu-series exploring identity, colonization, racism and the African Diaspora in Latin America and the Caribbean and the historical and present-day class color complex among Latinxs. Through candid interviews, the social manifestations and consequences of the deep-seated color and class complex is deconstructed. There will be a 47-minute screening of the feature length documentary followed by a discussion on practical, healing, everyday strategies we can employ in challenging, deconstructing, and dismantling white supremacist values through academic, social, and familial spaces.
Lisa Ko’s uncompromising, timely debut novel, THE LEAVERS, not only won the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Fiction – awarded by Barbara Kingsolver to a novel that addresses contemporary issues of social justice – last year, but was also a finalist for the National Book Award and the Barnes & Noble Discover Awards. Ko’s penetrating and emotionally rich work courageously tackles rarely-talked-about subtleties behind larger issues of immigration and adoption as it looks at questions of what it means to belong. Garnering tremendous critical acclaim nationwide, THE LEAVERS became one of the best books of 2017.
When eleven-year-old Deming Guo’s mother, Polly, an undocumented Chinese immigrant, fails to come home from work one day at the nail salon, he is left on his own. Adopted by two white college professors, he moves from the Bronx to upstate New York, where his name is changed to Daniel Wilkinson and his well-intentioned new parents try to give him an all-American life. But the boy, haunted by his mother’s disappearance and memories of all he has been forced to leave behind, struggles to embrace fully this new reality. Told from the perspective of both Daniel –as he grows into a troubled young man–and Polly, the narrative unravels the unnerving mystery of Polly’s disappearance and the difficult choice she is forced to make.
In Fighting For Space: How a Group of Drug Users Transformed One City’s Struggle with Addiction; author, Travis Lupick, recounts how Downtown Eastside activists marched in the streets to force politicians to change how we respond to the challenge of addiction. Drawing from the experience of the drug crisis in Vancouver in the 90’s. Lupick’s work explores a history of harm-reduction activism that connects the story in the book with the Downtown East-side’s response to the fentanyl crisis today. In the 1990s, drug overdoses killed hundreds and then thousands of people in Vancouver. Eventually, the city responded in incredible ways. Politicians listened to the demands of drug users and that led Vancouver to establish the continent’s first supervised-injection facility, Insite. Solutions to Vancouver’s crisis of the ’90s came from the drug users themselves. It was a political war that took nearly two decades but the activists eventually won. Today Vancouver is championed for pioneering harm reduction. Lupick will talk about where those activists are now, what roles they’ve taken on since fentanyl arrived, and what these drug users and their allies argue must happen next to begin to reduce overdose deaths.
With My Head Unbowed is a dual spoken-written, auditory-literary collection of emphatic poetry discussing family, women empowerment and the Black experience by Spoken Word artist Lady Brion. The book is rhythmic, hard- hitting and soulful in its unapologetic telling of the author's truth.