events at red emma's
Tuesday December 4, 7:00PM
The breadth and impact of Black Lives Matter in the United States has been extraordinary. Between 2012 and 2016, thousands of people marched, rallied, held vigils, and engaged in direct actions to protest and draw attention to state and vigilante violence against Black people. What began as outrage over the 2012 murder of Trayvon Martin and the exoneration of his killer, and accelerated during the Ferguson uprising of 2014, has evolved into a resurgent Black Freedom Movement, which includes a network of more than fifty organizations working together under the rubric of the Movement for Black Lives coalition. Employing a range of creative tactics and embracing group-centered leadership models, these visionary young organizers, many of them women, and many of them queer, are not only calling for an end to police violence, but demanding racial justice, gender justice, and systemic change.
In Making All Black Lives Matter, award-winning historian and longtime activist Barbara Ransby outlines the scope and genealogy of this movement, documenting its roots in Black feminist politics and situating it squarely in a Black radical tradition, one that is anticapitalist, internationalist, and focused on some of the most marginalized members of the Black community. From the perspective of a participant-observer, Ransby maps the movement, profiles many of its lesser-known leaders, measures its impact, outlines its challenges, and looks toward its future.
Wednesday December 5, 7:00PM
Frostlands is about a splintered world on the edge of climate catastrophe and the one woman who might just be able to save it. Ariel Dorfman calls it "a cautionary journey into a future planetary collapse where the term “one per cent” is redefined in a terrifying way." A stand-alone sequel to the critically acclaimed Splinterlands, "Frostlands is triumphant and absorbing science fiction, full of ecological and societal warnings," says Foreword Reviews.
John Feffer is a playwright, foreign policy expert at the Institute for Policy Studies, and the author of several novels and books of non-fiction.
Saturday December 8, 2:00PM
We're so excited to host local authors Mark Gruber-Lebowitz and Sheldon Gruber-Lebowitz for a reading of their new book for young readers, Peace Pom: Ronan Makes a Difference.
Ronan is a young Pomeranian dog who is hoping to tell everyone all about peace - how we can feel it ourselves and how we can spread it to those around us. First, we must find our own peace, deep within ourselves, through whatever brings peace to our souls. Then there are simple acts of friendship and loyalty - sharing our gifts, offering comfort and kindness to those who are hurting, and standing up against bullies. Ronan talks about how we can celebrate diversity, welcome immigrants who are new to the country, care for our endangered planet, and embrace nonviolent conflict resolution. All of us, big and little, can be makers of peace in many ways. In this second book of a series, Ronan the Pomeranian presents a description of peace in its many forms, offering strategies that will make this a more peaceful and just world.
This is a lovely book, and the event is suitable for readers and peacemakers of all ages! Welcome Mark and Sheldon!
Saturday December 8, 7:00PM
State takeovers of local governments have garnered national attention of late, particularly following the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In most U.S. cities, local governments are responsible for decisions concerning matters such as the local water supply and school affairs. However, once a state takes over, this decision-making capability is shuttled. Despite the widespread attention that takeovers in Flint and Detroit have gained, we know little about how such takeovers--a policy option that has been in use since the 1980s--affect political power in local communities.
By focusing on takeovers of local school districts, this book offers the first systematic study of state takeovers of local governments. Although many major U.S. cities have experienced state takeovers of their local school districts, we know little about the political causes and consequences of takeovers. Complicating this phenomenon are the justifications for state takeokers; while they are assumedly based on concerns with poor academic performance, questions of race and political power play a critical role in the takeover of local school districts. However, Domingo Morel brings clarity to these questions and limitations--he examines the factors that contribute to state takeovers as well as the effects and political implications of takeovers on racialized communities, the communities most often affected by them. Morel both lays out the conditions under which the policy will disempower or empower racial and ethnic minority populations, and expands our understanding of urban politics. Morel argues that state interventions are a part of the new normal for cities and offers a novel theoretical framework for understanding the presence of the state in America's urban areas. The book is built around an original study of nearly 1000 school districts, including every school district that has been taken over by their respective state, and a powerful case study of Newark, New Jersey.
Sunday December 9, 2:00PM
Thousands of Black children grew up in Cherry Hill, a post WWII planned suburban community containing a public housing project on a southeastern peninsula of Baltimore City. In an era of public investment in quality housing, these children had a sense of being loved, being free, being safe, and above all, having the space they needed to stretch out and enjoy small town living. They could play all day with their friends, skate and ride their bikes all over town, and chase the ice cream man’s truck, with the admonishment to be home by the time the streetlights came on. The author was one of those children, and she rallied sixty or so of her Cherry Hill contemporaries to share what life was like for them in what they know to be a special place and time.
Tuesday December 11, 7:00PM
Co-sponsored and with the participation of FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture.
Decriminalizing Domestic Violence asks the crucial, yet often overlooked, question of why and how the criminal legal system became the primary response to intimate partner violence in the United States. It introduces readers, both new and well versed in the subject, to the ways in which the criminal legal system harms rather than helps those who are subjected to abuse and violence in their homes and communities, and shares how it drives, rather than deters, intimate partner violence. The book examines how social, legal, and financial resources are diverted into a criminal legal apparatus that is often unable to deliver justice or safety to victims or to prevent intimate partner violence in the first place. Envisioned for both courses and research topics in domestic violence, family violence, gender and law, and sociology of law, the book challenges readers to understand intimate partner violence not solely, or even primarily, as a criminal law concern but as an economic, public health, community, and human rights problem. It also argues that only by viewing intimate partner violence through these lenses can we develop a balanced policy agenda for addressing it. At a moment when we are examining our national addiction to punishment, Decriminalizing Domestic Violence offers a thoughtful, pragmatic roadmap to real reform.
Wednesday December 12, 7:00PM
A new crime novel from award-winning journalist and labor activist Bill Fletcher, Jr.!
In 1970, a sniper’s bullet shocks the sleepy Cape Cod village of Osterville. David Gomes, a young reporter for the Cape & Islands Gazette covers the story, thinking his reporting might lead to a job with a major metropolitan newspaper. With protests against the Viet Nam war and the rise of the Black Panthers roiling the public, the murder investigation becomes deeply personal when Gomes, a Cape Verdean American, encounters the smoldering racial antagonism between the descendants of Cape Verde and African-Americans, as well as the deep-seated hatred toward all people of color among some members of the white community.
Gomes soon learns that investigating a murder can put him in the cross-hairs of a cold-blooded killer. It’s a dangerous place for the young reporter as he peels away layers of family history in his quest to discover the motive behind a savage act of murder, and comes to understand a complicated, contradictory history of his own people.
Set within a Cape Verdean American community undergoing a transformation of its own consciousness, Fletcher’s crime novel dives deep into two timely questions: Is revenge ever a moral form of justice, and when does silence become complicity as criminal acts are committed before your own eyes?
Thursday December 13, 7:00PM
Join us for a special event with feminist and anticapitalist organizer, theorist, and historian Silvia Federici.
One of the organizers of the Wages for Housework campaign, and the author of the modern classic Caliban and the Witch, Silvia will be in Baltimore to present two new books—Witches, Witch-Hunting, and Women and Re-enchanting the World: Feminism and the Politics of the Commons.
Wednesday December 19, 7:00PM
Join us for our annual holiday card writing event plus the Certain Days 2019 Calendar launch party! We’ll be sending dozens of holiday cards and birthday cards to political prisoners in time for the end of the year – a time of year that can be particularly lonely for those on the inside. Please join us to send some love through the walls.