Let's play ideological board games!

Wednesday November 6, 6:30PM

@ Red Emma's

N.B. This event will start early at 6:30 and take place upstairs in the restaurant to leave plenty of room for game play!

The adverb “avidly” is defined as “with great interest and enthusiasm.” Avidly―the online magazine founded in 2012 by Sarah Blackwood & Sarah Mesle and supported by the Los Angeles Review of Books―specializes in short-form critical essays devoted to the intersection of expertise and passion. Now, I hope you and your readers will embrace Avidly Reads, an exciting new series of books that are part memoir, part cultural criticism, each bringing to life the author’s emotional relationship to a cultural artifact or experience. Indeed, the editors and authors in the Avidly Reads series invite readers to explore the surprising pleasures and obstacles encountered in our everyday life.

In Board Games, writer and critic Eric Thurm digs deep into his own experience as a board game enthusiast to explore the emotional and social rules that games create and reveal, telling a series of stories about a pastime that is also about relationships. From the outdated gender roles in Life and Mystery Date to the cutthroat, capitalist priorities of Monopoly and its socialist counterpart, Class Struggle, Thurm thinks through his ongoing rivalries with his siblings and ponders the ways games both upset and enforce hierarchies and relationships―from the familial to the geopolitical. Like sitting down at the table for family game night, Board Games is an engaging book of twists and turns, trivia, and nostalgia.

Unlike our "normal" book events, this event is going to be highly participatory, with replicas of a hundred+ years of ideological board games available to play and then discuss with the author!

Eric Thurm is a writer whose work has appeared in, among other publications, Esquire, WIRED, Real Life, and The New York Times.

More upcoming events

@ Red Emma's

Like the world which they served to bind together, capitalist sexual relations are in crisis. But the concepts currently available to think through gender and political economy feel inadequate to grasp how the sexual order is under strain. Nobody can agree any longer on what this world is for.  


Pinko is a new magazine of gay communist thought that attempts to bring struggles against capitalist sexual relations into contact with struggles against the wage and against whiteness. Publishing twice a year, this first issue features dispatches from the Puerto Rican uprising and the Kentucky coal miners' blockade, essays about the communization of care and Kuwasi Balagoon, archival documents from groups like Third World Gay Revolution, and more. 


Editors from the Pinko collective will be at Red Emma’s on November 23rd to read from and discuss their new publication.

For generations, historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) have been essential institutions for the African American community. Their nurturing environments not only provided educational advancement but also catalyzed the Black freedom struggle, forever altering the political destiny of the United States. In this book, Jelani M. Favors offers a history of HBCUs from the 1837 founding of Cheyney State University to the present, told through the lens of how they fostered student activism.

Favors chronicles the development and significance of HBCUs through stories from institutions such as Cheyney State University, Tougaloo College, Bennett College, Alabama State University, Jackson State University, Southern University, and North Carolina A&T. He demonstrates how HBCUs became a refuge during the oppression of the Jim Crow era and illustrates the central role their campus communities played during the civil rights and Black Power movements. Throughout this definitive history of how HBCUs became a vital seedbed for politicians, community leaders, reformers, and activists, Favors emphasizes what he calls an unwritten "second curriculum" at HBCUs, one that offered students a grounding in idealism, racial consciousness, and cultural nationalism.

"I have been waiting for a prodigious researcher and storyteller to reconstruct what has never been fully reconstructed: the story of historically Black colleges and universities’ influence on Black activism. In Shelter in a Time of Storm, Jelani Favors has told that story, revealing how HBCUs have been the most fertile womb of Black activism in America throughout their history."--Ibram X. Kendi, National Book Award–winning author of Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America

Jelani M. Favors is assistant professor of history at Clayton State University.

Taylor Branch is an American author and public speaker best known for his landmark narrative history of the civil rights era, America in the King Years


@ Red Emma's

In recent years, you’ve no doubt heard the term “self-care” hundreds of times. You may know that the term originated in black feminist circles and soon became widely used in public health, disability, therapy and social work communities.  You’ve probably heard the critique that self-care is consumerism thinly cloaked as “wellness.” You’ve probably also heard progressives say that self-care individualizes systemic problems--which may be why politically engaged folks have been reticent to create printed matter about a new crop of anti-consumerist, community-oriented, body positive approaches to self-care. These "authentic" approaches to self-care appeal in particular (but not exclusively) to folks with class privilege who have achieved success on the outside—but still feel anxious, unfulfilled, and worried about the world around them.    

 

Now "authentic" self-care has a book, Gracy Obuchowicz’s selfcarefully, a different kind of self-help book, a book-as-object designed and illustrated by Maria Habib.


 Gracy Obuchowicz is a Washington, D.C.-based self-care coach who has taken over 200 women through her course, Self-Care 101, which interprets Ayurvedic wisdom for Western living. More than just achieving better personal habits, this intensive self-care work helped many of these women find deeper meaning in their work and lives—and take on more leadership in order to care for others and advocate for systemic change.

  

selfcarefully is where Gracy puts together her teachings in one place, sharing her unique definition of self-care and her vision of a more careful and caring world. The book contains 30 vignettes, including: self-care and setting boundaries, self-care and soaking grains, self-care and the moon, self-care and racism, self-care and consumerism, self-care and perfectionism, self-care and community, and more. It also contains excerpts of interviews with justice-seekers about leadership and self-care in action.

A warm, wise, and urgent guide to parenting in uncertain times, from a longtime reporter on race, reproductive health, and politics.

In We Live for the We, first-time mother Dani McClain sets out to understand how to raise her daughter in what she, as a black woman, knows to be an unjust–even hostile–society. Black women are more likely to die during pregnancy or birth than any other race; black mothers must stand before television cameras telling the world that their slain children were human beings. What, then, is the best way to keep fear at bay and raise a child so she lives with dignity and joy?

McClain spoke with mothers on the frontlines of movements for social, political, and cultural change who are grappling with the same questions. Following a child’s development from infancy to the teenage years, We Live for the We touches on everything from the importance of creativity to building a mutually supportive community to navigating one’s relationship with power and authority. It is an essential handbook to help us imagine the society we build for the next generation.