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FRIDAY July 17
The Sociopolitical Power of Story
Holly Karapetkova, Tara Campbell,
David Ebenbach, Melanie Hatter,
In the first half of 2020 we have witnessed COVID-19; the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and Rayshard Brooks; increasing negative impacts of climate change; and a failure of national leadership. What is our role as writers and storytellers in such an environment? How can art, and specifically literature, impact the way people see and engage with the world, and with each other? And what responsibility do we have as writers to engage with the social and political circumstances in which we find ourselves, especially as we are quarantined and physically isolated from one another? For this panel, Holly Karapetkova (WORDS WE MIGHT ONE DAY SAY) will moderate a discussion with writers Tara Campbell (MIDNIGHT AT THE ORGANPORIUM), David Ebenbach (MISS PORTLAND, SOME UNIMAGINABLE ANIMAL), Melanie Hatter (THE COLOR OF MY SOUL), and Sarah Trembath (THIS PAST WAS WAITING FOR ME), engaging in a dialogue about what it means to be a writer in our current political moment and how we can use the power of language and story to resist injustice and fight despair.
Perspectives and Reflections on Home
Caroline Bock, Susan Mockler
Home. The very word conjures a multitude of images and emotions. Think of the many cliché phrases associated with the word: family home, where the heart is, hearth and home, there’s no place like home. There are those, too, for whom home is not a safe place: running away from home, homebound, domestic abuse. And, the ultimate going home at our end. Whatever our experience, our emotional connections to home are strong. Fiction writer Caroline Bock and poet Susan Mockler will discuss different meanings of home in their work and how they’ve come to that meaning. They also will provide a writing prompt for participants to write together at the end and bring the session 'home."
Tell My Story: Preserving the Memory of a Family Member
E. Ethelbert Miller, Kirsten Porter,
Myra Sklarew, Sean Murphy
How do we honor a family member’s life with our words? As writers we can keep our loved ones alive in memoir and poetry, but how do we maintain the integrity of their stories when their memories may be compromised or they are no longer with us? E. Ethelbert Miller (Fathering Words), Kirsten Porter (A Family Apart, upcoming), and Myra Sklarew (Invitation to a Country Called Aging) read from their books and discuss the delicate work of the writer in bringing to light issues on memory, aging, legacy, and the changing roles of family members who become care-takers. Special thanks to Sean Murphy (Please Talk about Me When I’m Gone) for serving as panel moderator.
Written in Arlington: An Anthology Reading
Holly Karapetkova, Aaron R, Katherine Gekker, Martha Sanchez-Lowery, Michael A. Schaffner, Katherine E. Young
Written in Arlington / Spoken in Arlington is a print and digital collection of the poets and poems of Arlington, VA, edited by Katherine E. Young and published by Paycock Press (forthcoming, fall 2020). It is supported in part by Arlington County through the Arlington Cultural Affairs division of Arlington Economic Development and the Arlington Commission for the Arts. More information and a selection of poems from the anthology can be found here: https://katherine-young-poet.com/written-in-arlington/
SATURDAY July 18
The Post-COVID Classroom
Hilary Sortor, Gregg Wilhelm, Holly Karapetkova, Jen Disano
COVID has impacted virtually all aspects of society, not least our classrooms. While most learning shifted online, it was neither an uncomplicated nor ideal scenario. Going forward, many schools are planning to hold at least some classes in person, but those classes will not look at all like a traditional learning environment. Questions abound regarding how we proceed (this summer, this fall, next year…) and there’s little consensus on what’s best or even right. For instance, how a virtual learning experience works for grad students may be radically different for undergrads (or younger) students; and professors with decades of experience are now obliged to adapt to this new normal. In this panel, Hilary Sortor (Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology, Shenandoah University) will moderate a discussion with fellow educators Gregg Wilhelm (Director of Creative Writing, George Mason University), Holly Karapetkova (Marymount University), and Jen Disano (Executive Director, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at George Mason University).
Free Registration Required.