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The Appalachian Symposium, Berea

September 9, 2015 - September 10, 2015

The 2015 Appalachian Symposium is at the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center in Berea September 9-10. All events are free and open to the public. We welcome large school groups or anyone at all who would like to attend. There is plenty of room at all events (except for master classes, where space is somewhat limited, so show up in time to secure your seat). No registration required. Just show up and listen to these interesting public conversations. September 9 10.30–11.45 The Power of the Meaningful Specific: Master Class in Poetry An intensive master class in the fundamentals of writing poetry. Darnell Arnoult—Appalachian Center Gallery, Stephenson Hall Noon–12.30 Welcome: Silas House and Chad Berry Keynote One: Appalachia Is Our Fate One of our leading public intellectuals and acclaimed writers starts off our gathering with a compelling and moving talk about belonging to a culture that has shaped us in such significant ways. bell hooks 12.30–1.20 Where I’m From: Dialect and Accepted Classism Many people believe it is perfectly acceptable to demean Appalachians—and Appalachian writers—because of where they’re from. How do Appalachian writers deal with this, particularly when dialect, foodways, and the overall culture of the Appalachian people are so often maligned while also being central to their literature? Gwyn Hyman Rubio, Pam Duncan, Amy Greene, Crystal Wilkinson 1.20–1.30 Break 1.30–2.15 The Place Gives Rise to the Spirit: The Impact of Place on Appalachian Writers and Writing Appalachia is a place that gets under one’s skin, in ways both positive and negative. How do authors from the region honor the place while also tackling the problems like environmental injustice, political corruption, homophobia, racism, and other issues facing it? Erik Reece, Anne Shelby, Julia Watts, Frank X Walker 2.15–3.00 The Personal and the Political: Is Activism an Inherent Part of Writing About This Place and Its People? Do those writing about Appalachia have an extra responsibility as writers because they are from a place that is so often a hotbed of the major issues facing our nation today? Do all writers have a responsibility to give a voice to the voiceless? Four writers who have often been parts of the political conversations in our region discuss this and more. Dick Hague, Kay Byer, Frank X Walker, Denise Giardina 3.00–3.20 Book signing Silas House, bell hooks, Gwyn Hyman Rubio, Pam Duncan, Amy Greene, Erik Reece, Anne Shelby, Julia Watts, Richard Hague, Kay Byer, Frank X Walker, Denise Giardina, Crystal Wilkinson 3.20–4.00 Musical Interlude—Concert One of the region’s best singer-songwriters offers us a short concert of beautifully crafted music. Caroline Herring 4.00-4.45 Country Music and Appalachian Literature Appalachia is the birthplace of country music, so it would make sense that the genre regularly wends its way into the literature of this place. Four writers who often incorporate the complicated love affair between the region and country music offer a spirited and melodic conversation. Silas House, Marianne Worthington, Jason Howard, Jesse Graves 4.45–5.00 Book signings (tea, coffee) Silas House, Marianne Worthington, Jason Howard, Jesse Graves, Lee Smith, Caroline Herring, Rita Quillen, Linda Marion 5.00–6.00 Being of These Hills: A Public Reception for an Exhibit of Photographs by Roger May Doris Ulmann Galleries, Rogers-Traylor Art Building Music by Sam Gleaves 5.30–6.45 Bread, Butter, and Hot Rize: The Fundamentals of Writing Poetry Master Class in Poetry An intensive master class in the fundamentals of writing poetry. Linda Marion—Faber Library, Appalachian Center, Stephenson Hall 7.00–9.00 Screening of an Appalachian Film TBA Loyal Jones Appalachian Center Gallery —- Sept 10 All events in Presser Hall unless otherwise noted 9.00–9.45 The Nature of Loss: Displacement in Appalachian Literature Appalachia is a place haunted by displacement: the removal of the Cherokees; the influx of immigrants from countries that forced them out by way of political/religious/economic strife; the legacy of slavery and the Civil War; the creation of the TVA lakes and the National Parks; being told for a century that we are a disappearing people; etc. Four writers who have written extensively about the loss of the place in a variety of ways gather to talk about this evocative topic. Lisa Parker, Jane Hicks, Maurice Manning, Kay Byer 9.45–10.30 Writing the New Millennium These four writers have recently published much-acclaimed novels about the region and are becoming true voices for the place and its people. They’ll talk about what it means to be a contemporary writer of a place so associated with the past, the challenges facing Appalachian writers in the modern publishing world, and much more. Amy Greene, Charles Dodd White, Glenn Taylor, Robert Gipe 10.30–10.45 Book signing Lisa Parker, Jane Hicks, Maurice Manning, Kay Byer, Amy Greene, Charles Dodd White, Glenn Taylor, Robert Gipe, Crystal Wilkinson, Julia Watts, Jason Howard, Paula Nelson 10.45–11.30 We’re Here: Diversity in Appalachian Lit When most people think of Appalachia they immediately assume that everyone there is the same color, religion, and orientation. The truth is that Appalachia is a place ripe with many different ways of being. These writers will discuss the challenges of being writers from the region who challenge the commonly-held perceptions of what it means to be Appalachian while also often being thought of as The Other. Crystal Wilkinson, Julia Watts, Jason Howard, Paula Nelson 11.30–12.15 Country Badassery: Gender Roles in Appalachian Literature Over and over again, in literature we find that characters are often squarely defined by their gender, with societal factors determining what is “feminine” and what is “masculine.” At the same time, some writers often try to prove themselves as “gritty” while others are pigeon-holed because of their portrayals of gender. What really makes a badass? And what does that even mean? Four writers who often tackle issues of domesticity, machismo, strength, and gender expectations discuss this complex issue. Karen McElmurray, Marianne Worthington, Ron Houchin, Richard Hague 12.15–12.30 Book signing Karen McElmurray, Marianne Worthington, Ron Houchin, Richard Hague, Maurice Manning, Rita Quillen, Linda Parsons Marion 12.15–1.30 Lunch on your own 1.45–2.15 Keynote Two: The Irony of Appalachian Literature This Pulitzer Prize finalist poet offers an enlightening keynote on this irony and the way irony is not only a significant literary device in the classic works of Appalachian Literature but also a natural feature of the culture. Maurice Manning 2.15–3.00 To Tell the Truth: Writing Creative Nonfiction in a Culture of Secrets and Polite Denial Erik Reece, Karen McElmurray, Jason Howard, Crystal Wilkinson 3.00–3.15 Book signing Maurice Manning, Erik Reece, Karen McElmurray, Jason Howard, Crystal Wilkinson, Linda Parsons Marion 3.15–4.15 Nuts, Bolts, and Scaffolding: Elements of Fiction Master Class in Fiction An intensive master class in the fundamentals of writing fiction. Rita Quillen (Note: Remember that while the other two Master Classes will have taken place in Stephenson Hall, this one is on the main stage at Presser Hall) 4.30–5.30 A Public Conversation Between Legends Loyal Jones and Gurney Norman 5.30–5.45 Book signing Gurney Norman, Loyal Jones, Rita Quillen

Details

Start:
September 9, 2015
End:
September 10, 2015
Event Category:

Venue

Loyal Jones Appalachian Center
205 North Main Street CPO 2166
Berea, KY 40404 United States
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