Under the theme “We Have Tomorrow: Black Literature as Inspiration for Change,” the 2014 Austin African American Book Festival highlights talents and achievements that have so enriched American history and culture. The festival will take place Saturday, June 28, 10 am – 4 pm at the Carver Museum and Library (1165 Angelina, Austin, Texas). The lineup includes two distinguished writers whose works depict legendary figures in American sport, politics and literature.
MacArthur Fellow Dr. Arnold Rampersad will deliver the 2014 keynote. His biography subjects include trailblazers like Arthur Ashe and Jackie Robinson, as well as literary icons W. E. B. DuBois, Langston Hughes and Ralph Ellison. Rampersad is a professor at Stanford and a winner of the National Humanities Medal.
Dr. Peniel E. Joseph will discuss Stokely: A Life, an examination of Stokely Carmichael. The New York Times describes the book as “insightful, highly engaging and fluently written.” Dr. Joseph, who is a National Book Award winner and activist in his own right, will attend the festival via Skype.
Mississippi State Senator David Jordan will discuss and sign his book From the Mississippi Cotton Fields to the State Senate, A Memoir.
Rounding out the festival will be a showcase of local authors and two facilitated discussions. The first discussion will be a chance to remember and honor Dr. Maya Angelou. Carla Nickerson will lead the discussion and perform. The second discussion will be on Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness.
The festival is free and open to the public. For more information visit www.aabookfest.com.