Monday, March 31, 2008

Voices from the African Diaspora


I warned you that I'd be recapping some of my Kinky adventures from the road and here's one.

This past Saturday, I had the honor and privilege of participating on a panel called, Shades of the Diaspora: Voices of Black Women Writers at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland. I was joined by Lalita Tademy, author of Cane River and Red River. Her books started as a search into her own Louisiana family history and ended with these two amazing historical novels about the lives of a creole family before and after slavery.

The other author on the panel was world famous Jamaican poet, Lorna Goodison. Her latest book, Harvey River, is a memoir of her mother, her fantastic multicultural family and the history of Jamaica. The book received glowing praise in last Sunday's New York Times Book Review. And just hearing Goodison recount some of her family's tales, I can't wait to dive into Harvey River!

Needless to say, I felt like such a child compared to these accomplished women writers, yet they both made me feel so inspired to keep telling my stories and my truth. The audience seemed to agree. The Black experience in America is so varied I think we forget how vast this country is and how impossible it would be to have all arrived from the same path.

Here's to the storytellers who are expanding our possibilities, both past and present!


(Photo: From L to R Lorna Goodison, Lori L. Tharps, Lalita Tademy and moderator Esther Armah host of Off the Page)


Carleen Brice said...

Wow, what an honor! And, note to self: include the word "river" in my next book title! :)

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

I am adding those books to my list-to-read.

Me said...

Carleen and Ragazza,

Thanks for always having something to say. And Carleen I think you may be on to something with that River in the title thing. You Red River was an Oprah pick!