OCTOBER 11-14, 2018

and year round




We Can't Breathe

Jabari Asim

10/26/2018 - 7:00pm

Central Library - Community Rooms 301-302

In We Can't Breathe, Jabari Asim disrupts what Toni Morrison has exposed as the "Master Narrative" and replaces it with a story of black survival and persistence through art and community. In eight wide-ranging and penetrating essays, he explores such topics as the twisted legacy of jokes and falsehoods in black life; the importance of black fathers and community; the significance of black writers and stories; and the beauty and pain of the black body. What emerges is a rich portrait of a community and culture that resisted, survived and flourished despite centuries of racism, violence, and trauma. These thought-provoking essays present a different side of American history, one that doesn't depend on a narrative steeped in oppression bur rather reveals black voices telling their own stories. Sponsored by the Friends of UW-Madison Libraries and UW-Madison Memorial Library.

We Can't Breathe -  - <span class="date-display-single">10/26/2018 - 7:00pm</span>



Speak the Truth

Gyasi Ross

11/07/2018 - 7:00pm

Central Library - Madison Room

Known as one of the best storytellers and one of the sharpest young intellectuals in this time, Ross is the author of two books, Don’t Know Much About Indians (but I wrote a book about us anyways) (2011) and How to Say I Love You in Indian (2014). How to Say I Love You in Indian, with a foreword by renowned Native activist, environmentalist, economist and author Winona LaDuke, follows Gyasi Ross’s universally well-received first book. The stories and poems of How to Say I Love You in Indian are filled with humor, heartbreak and wisdom and convey Native love in many forms ­-- romantic, parental, love between friends, love of one's culture and community. Gyasi Ross says, “I come from a family of storytellers. My family tells long stories, drinking coffee and blowing smoke in your face. It just fit for me to tell stories, and then I started writing them.”


Presented in partnership with Madison College Office of Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement. 

Speak the Truth -  - <span class="date-display-single">11/07/2018 - 7:00pm</span>



The Library Book

Susan Orlean

11/12/2018 - 7:00pm

Central Library - Madison Room

At the 2018 Cheryl Rosen Weston Memorial Lecture, Susan Orlean, hailed as a “national treasure” by The Washington Post and the acclaimed bestselling author of Rin Tin Tin and The Orchid Thief, reopens the unsolved mystery of the most catastrophic library fire in American history, and delivers a dazzling love letter to a beloved institution—our libraries.


On the morning of April 29, 1986, a fire alarm sounded in the Los Angeles Public Library. As the moments passed, the patrons and staff who had been cleared out of the building realized this was not the usual false alarm. As one fireman recounted later, “Once that first stack got going, it was Goodbye, Charlie.” The fire was disastrous: It reached 2,000 degrees and burned for more than seven hours. By the time it was extinguished, it had consumed 400,000 books and damaged 700,000 more. Investigators descended on the scene, but over thirty years later, the mystery remains: Did someone purposefully set fire to the library—and if so, who?


The Library Book -  - <span class="date-display-single">11/12/2018 - 7:00pm</span>



The Splendor Before the Dark

Margaret George

11/14/2018 - 6:00pm

Room of One's Own

Ascending to the throne was only the beginning... Now Margaret George, the author of The Confessions of Young Nero, weaves a web of politics and passion, as ancient Rome's most infamous emperor cements his place in history. With the beautiful and cunning Poppaea at his side, Nero Augustus commands the Roman empire, ushering in an unprecedented era of artistic and cultural splendor. Although he has yet to produce an heir, his power is unquestioned. But in the tenth year of his reign, a terrifying prophecy comes to pass and a fire engulfs Rome, reducing entire swaths of the city to rubble. Rumors of Nero's complicity in the blaze start to sow unrest among the populace--and the politicians... 


The Splendor Before the Dark -  - <span class="date-display-single">11/14/2018 - 6:00pm</span>



The Snowy Nap

Jan Brett

12/01/2018 - 10:00am

Central Library - Children's Section

With over 42 million books in print, Jan Brett’s exquisite art is universally recognized as being among the finest in children’s books today. For over 30 years she has brought the glories of winter to millions of youngsters, their teachers, and parents.


The Snowy Nap, a prequel to the all-time classic bestselling picture book, The Hat, stars Hedgie, Brett’s trademark character. Inspired by his friends’ tales of their marvelous past winter adventures, he is determined not to sleep through all the fun again. Hedgie is dazzled by seeing the icy chicken coop sparkling like a palace, the frozen pond shining like a mirror, and the tinkling of sleigh bells. Readers will delight in Brett’s return to the Danish farm on the island of Funen. And Readers will be charmed by her meticulous and detailed illustrations, from the local houses with thatched roofs to the beautiful birch bark flourishes on every page.

The Snowy Nap -  - <span class="date-display-single">12/01/2018 - 10:00am</span>



Ghosts in the Schoolyard

Eve Ewing

12/05/2018 - 7:00pm

Central Library - Madison Room

In the spring of 2013, approximately 12,000 children in Chicago received notice that their last day of school would be not only the final day of the year, but also the final day of their school’s very existence. The nation’s third-largest school district would eventually shutter 53 schools, citing budget limitations, building underutilization, and concerns about academic performance. Of the thousands of displaced students, 94% were low-income and 88% were African-American, leading critics to accuse district CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett and Mayor Rahm Emanuel of racism. “[The mayor] says that he wants to turn around the city of Chicago, make a new Chicago,” one activist told a reporter. “Does that new Chicago mean no black folks? Where are people going to go?”


Ghosts in the Schoolyard -  - <span class="date-display-single">12/05/2018 - 7:00pm</span>
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