We welcome art historian Andrei Pop in support of his latest, A Forest of Symbols: Art, Science, and Truth in the Long Nineteenth Century. A book signing will follow. The event is free and open to the public.
About the book: A groundbreaking reassessment of Symbolist artists and writers that investigates the concerns they shared with scientists of the period–the problem of subjectivity in particular.
In A Forest of Symbols, Andrei Pop presents a groundbreaking reassessment of those writers and artists in the late nineteenth century associated with the Symbolist movement. For Pop, “symbolist” denotes an art that is self-conscious about its modes of making meaning, and he argues that these symbolist practices, which sought to provide more direct access to viewers and readers by constant revision of its material means of meaning-making (brushstrokes on a canvas, words on a page), are crucial to understanding the genesis of modern art. The symbolists saw art not as a social revolution, but as a revolution in sense and how to conceptualize the world. The concerns of symbolist painters and poets were shared to a remarkable degree by theoretical scientists of the period, who were dissatisfied with the strict empiricism dominant in their disciplines, which made shared knowledge seem unattainable.
The problem of subjectivity in particular, of what in one’s experience can and cannot be shared, was crucial to the possibility of collaboration within science and to the communication of artistic innovation. Pop offers close readings of the literary and visual practices of Manet and Mallarmé, of drawings by Ernst Mach, William James and Wittgenstein, of experiments with color by Bracquemond and Van Gogh, and of the philosophical systems of Frege and Russell–filling in a startling but coherent picture of the symbolist heritage of modernity and its consequences.
Andrei Pop is a member of the Committee on Social Thought and the Department of Art History at the University of Chicago.
One MFA student of fiction and one of poetry, each introduced by a peer, will read their work. The Mark Webster Reading Series presents emerging writers in a warm and relaxed setting. We encourage you to bring your friends – a Webster reading makes for an enjoyable and enlightening Friday evening.
Rumrunners and bootleggers and speakeasies, oh my! Mickey Lyons of DetroitProhibition.com takes us through Detroit’s intoxicating history during the prohibition years, from sloshing the stuff across the Detroit River to raiding the liquor cabinets and speakeasies with a whole lot of intemperance.
Mickey is a Detroit-based author and researcher on Detroit Prohibition history. Her upcoming book, City on a Still: Detroit During Prohibition, is in the works. In the meantime, she spends her days trudging through old bars and buildings and sifting through old newspapers.
This event is in partnership with the Culinary Historians of Ann Arbor (CHAA), an organization of scholars, cooks, food writers, nutritionists, collectors, students, and others interested in the study of culinary history and gastronomy. Their mission is to promote the study of culinary history through regular programs open to members and guests, through the quarterly newsletter Repast, and through exchanges of information with other such organizations.
We welcome Cave Canem Poetry Prize winner Malcom Tariq in support of his collection, Heed the Hollow, as part of our ongoing Poetry at Literati Series, reading with Jonah Mixon-Webster. A Book signing will follow. The event is free and open to the public.
Malcolm Tariq is from Savannah, Georgia, and is the author of Extended Play, winner of the 2017 Gertrude Press Poetry Chapbook Contest. A graduate of Emory University, he has a PhD in English from the University of Michigan. He lives in New York.
Jonah Mixon-Webster is a poet and conceptual/sound artist from Flint, MI. His debut poetry collection, Stereo(TYPE), received the 2017 Sawtooth Poetry Prize from Ahsahta Press, the 2019 PEN America/Joyce Osterweil Award, and was a finalist for the 2019 Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry. He is the recipient of fellowships from Vermont Studio Center, Center for African American Poetry and Poetics, The Conversation Literary Festival, ivoh, and Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop. His poetry and hybrid works are featured in various publications including PEN America Poetry Series, Best New Poets 2017, PennSound, and Best American Experimental Writing 2018.
Sweetland’s Writer to Writer series lets you hear directly from University of Michigan professors about their challenges, processes, and expectations as writers and also as readers of student writing. Each semester, Writer to Writer pairs one esteemed University professor with a Sweetland faculty member for a conversation about writing. For this installment, host Shelley Manis will speak with Professor Jennifer Proctor.
Writer to Writer sessions take place at the Literati bookstore and are broadcast live on WCBN radio. These conversations offer students a rare glimpse into the writing that professors do outside the classroom. You can hear instructors from various disciplines describe how they handle the same challenges student writers face, from finding a thesis to managing deadlines. Professors will also discuss what they want from student writers in their courses, and will take questions put forth by students and by other members of the University community. If there’s anything you’ve ever wanted to ask a professor about writing, Writer to Writer gives you the chance.
Jennifer Proctor is an Associate Professor of Journalism and Screen Studies at the University of Michigan-Dearborn and co-founder and director of the inclusive teaching initiative EDIT Media (Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Teaching Media). She is a filmmaker and media artist whose internationally recognized, award-winning found footage work examines the history of experimental film, Hollywood tropes, and the representation of women in cinema. Her recent work, in particular, seeks to blur boundaries between avant-garde film practices and the scholarly video essay. Her 2018 film “Nothing a Little Soap and Water Can’t Fix,” which examines the bathtub as a feminized domestic space, won the Cutters Archival Film Award at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Top Grit at the Indie Grits Film Festival, and Best Experimental Film at the St. Francis College Women’s Film Festival, in addition to screening at more than forty film festivals around the world. Her recent video, “Am I Pretty?” appropriates the voices of tween girls from YouTube videos to explore the development of self-image and self-esteem in the modern era. In addition to screening at film festivals, including the Ann Arbor Film Festival, “Am I Pretty?” appears in a special issue on audiography in [in]Transition: The Journal of Videographic Film and Moving Image Studies.
We’re partnering with Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center to welcome Tia Powell in support of her book Dementia Reimagined. A book signing will follow. The event is free and open to the public.
About the book: The cultural and medical history of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease by a leading psychiatrist and bioethicist who urges us to turn our focus from cure to care.
Despite being a physician and a bioethicist, Tia Powell wasn’t prepared to address the challenges she faced when her grandmother, and then her mother, were diagnosed with dementia–not to mention confronting the hard truth that her own odds aren’t great. In the U.S., 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day; by the time a person reaches 85, their chances of having dementia approach 50 percent. And the truth is, there is no cure, and none coming soon, despite the perpetual promises by pharmaceutical companies that they are just one more expensive study away from a pill. Dr. Powell’s goal is to move the conversation away from an exclusive focus oncure to a genuine appreciation of care–what we can do for those who have dementia, and how to keep life meaningful and even joyful.
Reimagining Dementia is a moving combination of medicine and memoir, peeling back the untold history of dementia, from the story of Solomon Fuller, a black doctor whose research at the turn of the twentieth century anticipated important aspects of what we know about dementia today, to what has been gained and lost with the recent bonanza of funding for Alzheimer’s at the expense of other forms of the disease. In demystifying dementia, Dr. Powell helps us understand it with clearer eyes, from the point of view of both physician and caregiver. Ultimately, she wants us all to know that dementia is not only about loss–it’s also about the preservation of dignity and hope.
Dr. Tia Powell is Director of the Montefiore Einstein Center for Bioethics and of the Einstein Cardozo Master of Science in Bioethics program. She is Professor of Epidemiology, Division of Bioethics, and Psychiatry. She has bioethics expertise in public policy, dementia, consultation, end of life care, decision-making capacity, bioethics education and the ethics of public health disasters. She served four years as Executive Director of the New York State Task Force on Life and the Law, which functions as New York State’s bioethics commission. She has worked with the Institute of Medicine on many projects related to public health and ethics, and most recently served on the 2017 report on community approaches to address health inequities. She is a board certified psychiatrist and Fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine, the American Psychiatric Association and The Hastings Center.
ONE PAUSE POETRY SALON is (literally) a greenhouse for poetry and poets, nurturing an appreciation for written art in all languages and encouraging experiments in creative writing.
We meet every Weds in the greenhouse at Argus Farm Stop on Liberty St. The poems we read each time are unified by form (haiku, sonnet, spoken word), poet, time / place (Tang Dynasty, English Romanticism, New York in the 70s) or theme / mood (springtime, poems with cats, protest poems). We discuss the poems and play writing games together, with time for snacks and socializing in between.
Members are encouraged to share their own poems or poems they like – they may or may not relate to the theme of the evening. This is not primarily a workshop – we may hold special workshop nights, but mostly we listen to and talk about poems for the sake of inspiring new writing.
Whether you are a published poet or encountering poetry for the first time, we invite you to join us!
$5 suggested donation for food, drinks and printing costs.
8-10 p.m., Argus Farm Stop greenhouse, 325 W. Liberty. $5 suggested donation. onepausepoetry.org, 707-1284.
The University of Michigan Prison Creative Arts Project, University of Michigan Carceral State Project, and Literati Bookstore are delighted to welcome Ebony Roberts to the Ann Arbor District Library’s Downtown Branch in support of her new memoir, The Love Prison Made and Unmade: My Story. Ebony will be in conversation with Ashley Lucas, Director of the Prison Creative Arts Project at the University of Michigan. A Q&A and book signing will follow.
About the book: Ebony grew up in Detroit in the 1980s. As a little girl she witnessed her parents’ brutal physical fights, often fueled by her father’s alcoholism. Then one day her father tried to kill her mother right before her eyes. That day she vowed she’d find a love she didn’t have to run from.
Ebony’s experiences as a child shaped her views on love and set the pattern for her future romantic relationships. Despite her determination not to repeat her parents’ mistakes—she would have a fairytale love—Ebony found herself drawn to bad boys: men who cheated; men who verbally abused her; men who disappointed her. Finally fed up, she swore to wait for the partner God chose for her.
Then she met Shaka Senghor, a man in prison for second-degree murder. Though she felt an intense spiritual connection, Ebony struggled with the idea that this man behind bars could be the love God had for her. Ultimately she ignored other people’s fears and took a chance on Shaka. Through letters and visits, the two fell deeply in love. Almost from the start Shaka and Ebony dreamed about their happily-ever-after. Once Shaka came home, they thought the worst was behind them. But Shaka’s release was the beginning of the end.
The Love Prison Made and Unmade is heartfelt. It reveals powerful lessons about love, sacrifice, courage, and forgiveness; of living your highest principles and learning not to judge someone by their worst acts. Ultimately, it is a stark reminder of the emotional cost of American justice on human lives—the partners, wives, children, and friends—beyond the prison walls.
Ebony Roberts is a writer, researcher, educator, and activist. A former school administrator, she has taught at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. Ebony recently served as program director for #BeyondPrisons, an organization designed to uplift the voices of those impacted by the criminal justice system. She received her BA in Social Relations and Psychology, and a Ph.D in Educational Psychology from Michigan State University.
Reception at 6:30pm
Program to follow
We are excited to welcome Janet Gilsdorf to celebrate the launch of her book, Continual Raving: A History of Meningitis and the People Who Conquered It (Oxford University Press). Dr. Gilsdorf is a research scientist, pediatrician, educator and author. She is the Robert P. Kelch Research Professor Emerita at the University of Michigan, where she cares for children with complex infectious diseases, and formerly directed the Haemophilus influenzae research laboratory.
Continual Raving tells the combined stories of how scientists across the 19th and 20th centuries defeated meningitis — not through flawless scientific research, but often through a series of serendipitous events, misplaced assumptions, and flawed conclusions. The result is a story of not just a vanquished disease, but how scientific accomplishment sometimes occurs where it’s least expected.
Reception with light refreshments at 6:30pm, program and book signing to follow.
“In Continual Raving, Dr. Janet Gilsdorf, a true expert, brings alive for all readers a profoundly important history that is a paradigm for disease, failure, progress, and redemption. Recounting the origins and the activities of the protagonists make this is a real story of science, warts and all” — Martin Blaser, Author of Missing Microbes
Skazat! is back, and have we got a season lined up for you! Join us at Sweetwaters Coffee & Tea Washington St. to celebrate with fabulous poetry and tasty treats. Whether you’re a page poet, slammer, performance artist or refuse a label, we want to hear your new stuff on our open mic. We look forward to sharing great poetry (and great coffee) with you and invite you to join this free open mic and monthly reading series!
Sign up! 7:00 p.m.
7:15 p.m. – Open mic
8:00 p.m. – Featured Reader
This month’s feature: David Hornibrook