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Food for Thought: In Praise of Black Performance (Feb. 9)

Updated: Jan 22, 2023

This year's book discussion centers around literary prizes. We meet at 5:00 on the 2nd Thursday, Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County – Main, 305 Wick Ave., 2nd floor meeting room. Our February title is A Little Devil in America: Notes In Praise Of Black Performance, a collection of essays by Hanif Abdurraqib, MacArthur "Genius Grant" Fellow. This book is available from The Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County and the YSU Barnes & Noble.

"'I was a devil in other countries, and I was a little devil in America, too.' Inspired by these few words, spoken by Josephine Baker at the 1963 March on Washington, bestselling author Hanif Abdurraqib has written a profound and lasting reflection on how Black performance is inextricably woven into the fabric of American culture... Touching on Michael Jackson, Patti LaBelle, Billy Dee Williams, the Wu-Tan Clan, Dave Chappelle, and more, Abdurraqib writes prose brimming with jubilation and pain... Filled with sharp insight, humor, and heart, A Little Devil in America exalts the Black performance that unfolds in specific moments in time and space—from midcentury Paris to the moon, and back down again to a cramped living room in Columbus, Ohio." Upcoming titles in this series:

March: (novel) Orange Prize for Fiction: The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht April (non-fiction) National Book Award: All That She Carried by Tiya Miles May: (biography) Pulitzer: Prairie Fires: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser



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