Calendar

Dec
2
Mon
Johannes and Dorothea von Moltke: Last Letters – The Prison Correspondence Between Helmuth James and Freya Von Moltke, 1944-45 @ Literati
Dec 2 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

We’re pleased to welcome Johannes and Dorothea von Moltke to the store for a discussion of Last Letters: The Prison Correspondence Between Helmuth James and Freya Von Moltke, 1944-45, for which they served as co-editors. The event is free and open to the public. 

About the book: Available for the first time in English, a moving prison correspondence between a husband and wife who resisted the Nazis.

Tegel prison, Berlin, in the fall of 1944. Helmuth James von Moltke is awaiting trial for his leading role in the Kreisau Circle, one of the most important German resis- tance groups against the Nazis. By a near miracle, the prison chaplain at Tegel is Harald Poelchau, a friend and coconspirator of Helmuth and his wife, Freya. From Helmuth’s arrival at Tegel in late September 1944 until the day of his execution by the Nazis on January 23, 1945, Poelchau would carry Helmuth’s and Freya’s letters in and out of prison daily, risking his own life. Freya would safeguard these letters for the rest of her long life. Last Letters is a profoundly personal record of the couple’s fortitude in the face of fascism.

Johannes von Moltke is a professor of German and Film, Media and Television at the University of Michigan and the grandson of Freya and Helmuth von Moltke.

Dorothea von Moltke is co-owner of Labyrinth Books in Princeton, NJ, and the granddaughter of Freyaand Helmuth von Moltke.

Dec
3
Tue
Zell Visiting Writers: Arthur Sze @ U-M Museum of Art Apse
Dec 3 @ 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm

Literati is pleased to be the official bookseller for the Zell Visiting Writing Series, produced by the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan. 

Arthur Sze is a poet, translator, and editor. He has published ten books of poetry, including Sight Lines, Compass Rose, The Ginkgo Light, Quipu, The Redshifting Web: Poems 1970-1998, and Archipelago, all from Copper Canyon Press. He has also published The Silk Dragon: Translations from the Chinese and edited Chinese Writers on Writing. A bilingual Chinese/English selected poems, Pig’s Heaven Inn, was published in Beijing, and he has also collaborated with sculptor Susan York to create a book and installation, The Unfolding Center.

Known for his difficult, meticulous poems, Sze’s work has been described as the “intersection of Taoist contemplation, Zen rock gardens and postmodern experimentation” by the critic John Tritica. The poet Dana Levin described Sze as “a poet of what I would call Deep Noticing, a strong lineage in American poetry… Dispassionate presentation of ‘the thing itself’ is its prevailing attribute, yet Sze’s attention is capacious; it’s attracted to paradox; it takes facing opponents and seats them side by side.” In addition, K. Michel, a Dutch poet writing for Poetry International says, “Sze’s work is characterized by its unusual combination of images and ideas, and by the surprising way in which he makes connections between diverse aspects of the world. In his poetry he combines images from urban life and nature, ideas from modern astronomy and Chinese philosophy as well as anecdotes from rural and industrial America. In this way, he creates texts that capture and reflect the complexity of reality.”

Sze’s many awards include The Jackson Poetry Prize from Poets & Writers, a Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Writers’ Award, a Lannan Literary Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing fellowships, a Howard Foundation Fellowship, and five grants from the Witter Bynner Foundation for Poetry. From 2012-2017, he served as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and, in 2017, was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a professor emeritus at the Institute of American Indian Arts and lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

This event is free and open to the public. Onsite book sales will be provided by Literati Bookstore.

The Zell Visiting Writers Series brings outstanding writers to campus each semester. UMMA is pleased to be the site for most of these events. The Series is made possible through a generous gift from U-M alumna Helen Zell (BA ’64, LLDHon ’13). For more information, please visit the Zell Visiting Writers Program webpage: https://lsa.umich.edu/writers

Grace Talusan: The Body Papers: A Memoir @ Literati
Dec 3 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

We’re pleased to welcome Grace Talusan for a reading in support of her memoir, The Body Papers, Winner of the Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing and was a New York Times Editors’ Choice selection. Free and open to the public, a book signing will follow. 

About the book: Born in the Philippines, young Grace Talusan moves with her family to a New England suburb in the 1970s. At school, she confronts racism as one of the few kids with a brown face. At home, the confusion is worse: her grandfather’s nightly visits to her room leave her hurt and terrified, and she learns to build a protective wall of silence that maps onto the larger silence practiced by her Catholic Filipino family. Talusan learns as a teenager that her family’s legal status in the country has always hung by a thread—for a time, they were “illegal.” Family, she’s told, must be put first.

The abuse and trauma Talusan suffers as a child affects all her relationships, her mental health, and her relationship with her own body. Later, she learns that her family history is threaded with violence and abuse. And she discovers another devastating family thread: cancer. In her thirties, Talusan must decide whether to undergo preventive surgeries to remove her breasts and ovaries. Despite all this, she finds love, and success as a teacher. On a fellowship, Talusan and her husband return to the Philippines, where she revisits her family’s ancestral home and tries to reclaim a lost piece of herself.

Not every family legacy is destructive. From her parents, Talusan has learned to tell stories in order to continue. The generosity of spirit and literary acuity of this debut memoir are a testament to her determination and resilience. In excavating such abuse and trauma, and supplementing her story with government documents, medical records, and family photos, Talusan gives voice to unspeakable experience, and shines a light of hope into the darkness.

Grace Talusan was born in the Philippines and raised in New England. A graduate of Tufts University and the MFA Program in Writing at UC Irvine, she is the recipient of a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship to the Philippines and an Artist Fellowship Award from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Talusan teaches the Essay Incubator at GrubStreet and at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts. She is the Fannie Hurst Writer-in-Residence at Brandeis University for 2019–2021. The Body Papers, winner of the Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, is her first book.

Dec
4
Wed
Poetry Series at Crazy Wisdom: George Tysh and Chris Tysh @ Crazy Wisdom
Dec 4 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Crazy Wisdom Poetry Series hosted by Joe Kelty, Ed Morin, and David Jibson • Second and Fourth Wednesdays, 7-9 p.m. in the Crazy Wisdom Tea Room • Second Wednesdays are poetry workshop nights. All writers welcome to share and discuss their own poetry and short fiction. Sign up for new participants begins at 6:45 p.m.

Fourth Wednesdays have a featured reader for 50 minutes and then open mic for an hour. All writers welcome to share. Sign up begins at 6:45 p.m. Free. Contact Ed at 668-7523; eacmorso@sbcglobal.net or cwpoetrycircle.tumblr.com.

December 4 – George Tysh has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Kresge Foundation. His 11 books of poetry include The Slip (2015) and The Imperfect (2010), with a new collection, Twisted Flesh, forthcoming in 2020. He teaches film studies and poetics at College for Creative Studies in Detroit.

and Chris Tysh is author of several plays and collections of poetry. Her latest project, Hotel des Archives, features verse “transcreations” from the novels of Samuel Beckett, Jean Genet, and Marguerite Duras, published by Station Hill Press. She holds fellowships from The National Endowment for the Arts and the Kresge Foundation.

 

 

Dec
6
Fri
Webster Reading Series: Meagean L. Dugger and Logan Lane @ UMMA Auditorium
Dec 6 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

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.

 

Jan
6
Mon
Thomas Lynch: The Depositions, and conversation with Keith Taylor @ Literati
Jan 6 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

We’re pleased to welcome the beloved author of The Undertaking in support of his latest, The Depositions: New and Selected Essays on Being and Ceasing to Be. The author will be in conversation with poet Keith Taylor. Signing to follow. Free and open to the public.

About the book: 

For nearly four decades, poet, essayist, and small-town funeral director Thomas Lynch has probed relations between the literary and mortuary arts. His life’s work with the dead and the bereaved has informed four previous collections of nonfiction, each exploring identity and humanity with Lynch’s signature blend of memoir, meditation, gallows humor, and poetic precision.

The Depositions provides an essential selection from these masterful collections—essays on fatherhood, Irish heritage, funeral rites, and the perils of bodiless obsequies—as well as new essays in which the space between Lynch’s hyphenated identities—as an Irish American, undertaker-poet—is narrowed by the deaths of poets, the funerals of friends, the loss of neighbors, intimate estrangements, and the slow demise of a beloved dog.

As Alan Ball writes in a penetrating foreword, Lynch’s work allows us “to see both the absurdity and the beauty of death, sometimes simultaneously.” With this landmark collection, he continues to illuminate not only how we die, but also how we live.

Thomas Lynch has authored five collections of poetry, one of stories, and four books of essays. His first, The Undertaking, won the Heartland Prize for Non-Fiction and the American Book Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Award. His writing has appeared in the AtlanticGrantaHarper’s Magazine, and the New York Times, among other publications. He works as a funeral director in Milford, Michigan, and teaches at the Bear River Writer’s Conference.

Jan
7
Tue
Lewis Raven Wallace: The View from Somewhere @ Literati
Jan 7 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

Independent journalist and co-founder of Press On visits the store in support of The View from Somewhere: Undoing the Myth of Journalistic Objectivity. Book signing to follow. Free and open to the public. 

About the book: “Wallace asks the right questions and makes a powerful case for a reexamination of what journalism is and how it can best serve the public. American journalists will readily admit, I think, that our industry has let down the broader community in recent years. Wallace posits a new solution for how we might avoid the mistakes of the past and move forward in a productive way. The View from Somewhere is both a fascinating dissection of our political body and a passionate plea for reform. It’s also a darn good read.”–Celeste Headlee, author of We Need to Talk: How to Have Conversations That Matter

 

Lewis Raven Wallace is an independent journalist, a co-founder of Press On, a southern movement journalism collective, and the host of The View from Somewhere podcast. He previously worked in public radio and is a longtime activist engaged in prison abolition, racial justice, and queer and trans liberation. He is a white transgender person from the Midwest and is now based in North Carolina.

Jan
8
Wed
Indelible in the Hippocampus: Writings from the Me Too Movement @ Literati
Jan 8 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

We are delighted to welcome the publisher and three contributors to this intersectional collection of essays, fiction, and poetry featuring black, Latinx, Asian, queer, and trans writers for a panel discussion!

About the book: “Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter,” said Dr. Christine Blasey-Ford when she testified to congress in September 2018 about the men who victimized her. A year earlier, in October 2017, the hashtag #MeToo shone a light on the internalized, normalized sexual harassment and abuse that’d been ubiquitous for women for generations.

Among the first books to emerge from the #MeToo movement, Indelible in the Hippocampus is a truly intersectional collection of essays, fiction, and poetry. These original texts sound the voices of black, Latinx, Asian, queer, and trans writers, to name but a few, and says “me too” 23 times. Whether reflecting on their teenage selves or their modern-day workplaces, each contributor approaches the subject with unforgettable authenticity and strength.

Together these pieces create a portrait of cultural sea-change, offering the reader a deeper understanding of this complex, galvanizing pivot in contemporary consciousness.

Nandi Comer is the author of the American Family: A Syndrome (Finishing Line Press) and Tapping Out (Northwestern University Press, May, 2020). She is a Cave Canem fellow as well as a Callaloo fellow. She is a 2019 Kresge Artist Fellow. Her poems have appeared in Crab Orchard Review, Green Mountains Review, Muzzle, The Offing and Southern Indiana Review.

Emily Jace McLaughlin is a fiction writer and screenwriter. Her short stories have appeared in Catapult, VICE, Cutbank, and Fiction, among other journals. She is a graduate of the Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan, where she won Hopwood Awards for her novel, short fiction, essays and play, and where she currently teaches. She formerly wrote for Warner Brothers Television.

Polly Rosenwaike’s story collection, Look How Happy I’m Making You, was named one of Kirkus Reviews’ “Best Short Story Collections of 2019,” and Glamour’s “Best Books of 2019.” She works as a freelance editor in Ann Arbor and is the Fiction Editor for Michigan Quarterly Review.

Amanda Uhle is Executive Director and Publisher of McSweeney’s, known for its award-winning quarterly literary journal, humor website and eclectic book publishing program. She is co-founder, with Dave Eggers, of The International Congress of Youth Voices. For more than 11 years, Uhle was executive director 826michigan, a nonprofit tutoring and writing center for school-aged students in Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Ypsilanti. Trained as a journalist, she writes independently and is sometimes host of the author interview radio program and podcast, Living Writers. She remains involved with numerous youth writing organizations in Michigan and around the world, supporting their fundraising and programming as a volunteer consultant. She’s a board member of Choose Yourself, a youth-led organization working to raise fearless girls and young women in the nations of Africa and in the United States

Poetry and the Written Word: Poetry Workshop @ Crazy Wisdom
Jan 8 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Crazy Wisdom Poetry Series hosted by Joe Kelty, Ed Morin, and David Jibson • Second and Fourth Wednesdays, 7-9 p.m. in the Crazy Wisdom Tea Room • Second Wednesdays are poetry workshop nights. All writers welcome to share and discuss their own poetry and short fiction. Sign up for new participants begins at 6:45 p.m.

Fourth Wednesdays have a featured reader for 50 minutes and then open mic for an hour. All writers welcome to share. Sign up begins at 6:45 p.m. Free. Contact Ed at 668-7523; eacmorso@sbcglobal.net or cwpoetrycircle.tumblr.com.

 

Jan
9
Thu
Zell Visiting Writers: Shane McCrae @ 1027 East Huron Bldg
Jan 9 @ 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Shane McCrae’s book of poems, The Gilded Auction Block (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2019), puts the news in poems and fits the news into history and futurity. His poems speak of both the ridiculousness and the unnerving familiarity of today. Dan Chiasson, writing for the New Yorker, praises McCrae’s “beautifully up-to-date, old-fashioned work, where the dignity of English meters meets, as in a mosh pit, the vitality―and often the brutality―of American speech.”

McCrae is also the author of Sometimes I Never Suffered (to be published in spring, 2020, by Farrar, Straus and Giroux); In the Language of My Captor, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and the William Carlos Williams Award, and won the 2018 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Poetry; The Animal Too Big to Kill, winner of the 2014 Lexi Rudnitsky Editor’s Choice Award; Forgiveness Forgiveness; Blood; and Mule. He is the recipient of a Whiting Writer’s Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, the 2017 Lannan Literary Award for Poetry, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He teaches at Columbia University and lives in New York City.

This event is free and open to the public. Onsite book sales will be provided by Literati Bookstore.

The Zell Visiting Writers Series brings outstanding writers to campus each semester. UMMA is pleased to be the site for most of these events. The Series is made possible through a generous gift from U-M alumna Helen Zell (BA ’64, LLDHon ’13). For more information, please visit the Zell Visiting Writers Program webpage: https://lsa.umich.edu/writers