Literature

12 Angry Men-Inside the Room Where it Happens

What does it mean to be socially responsible in America and to serve on a jury?  In this program, Alice Osborn explores this question through the film adaptation of Reginald Rose's teleplay "12 Angry Men."  Using selections from the film, participants will discuss the history of juries in the United States and how serving on a jury is fundamental to democracy.

Requirements: 
Lectern, microphone, digital projector

Censorship in American Literature

The First Amendment of the United State Constitution provides a guarantee of freedom of speech, however, some of the great titles in American literature have been censored including books by Mark Twain, (Huckleberry Finn), J. D. Salinger (Catcher in The Rye), Harper Lee, (To Kill a Mockingbird). In this presentation Maryrose Carroll will provide an overview of censorship in American looking at several famous national examples and share her personal story of censorship.

What Makes a Southern Story Southern?

Southern stories are more than tangled tales of honeysuckle and kudzu. The thirteen states that comprise the Old South have collectively produced some of the nation’s finest writers and the past century’s most honored books.

While some insist that “authentic” Southern stories must include a dead mule, Tamra Wilson begs to differ. In this presentation she will share from her own research the six essentials that define Southern fiction and memoir. You’ll never look at Southern literature quite the same way again. 

Requirements: 
Lectern, microphone, digital projector, laptop computer

Southern Selves: The Child as Storyteller

Coming-of-Age stories are regarded by some as quintessentially American, and few have succeeded as well as Harper Lee and James Agee. Both offer compelling approaches to the Southern narrative.

Requirements: 
Lectern, microphone, digital projector, laptop computer

Four "Christ-Haunted" Writers Today

Susan Ketchin provides a lively, audience-interactive look at four contemporary “Christ-haunted” writers:  Lee Smith, Doris Betts, Alice Walker, and Charles Frazier*

Requirements: 
lectern, microphone, digital projection system, display table, whiteboard

God In Southern Story and Song: Spirituality and Music in Literature of the American South

With musical accompaniment (songs sung with guitar accompaniment and/or CD recordings throughout the talk), Susan Ketchin explores through lively lecture, storytelling, and humor the role that southern music and religion have played in the imaginative works of great southern writers such as Lee Smith, Charles Frazier, Eudora Welty, and Lewis Nordan.  These and other outstanding writers of the American South, both past and present, such as William Faulkner and Flannery O'Connor (whose literary and cultural influences will be given as context for the contemporary writers presen

Requirements: 
lectern, microphone, digital projection system, table for display, whiteboard

Gerald W. Johnson: Scotland County’s Pioneering Journalist and Noted Historian

Gerald White Johnson (1890-1980), born in Riverton (near Wagram in Scotland County), was a giant among American scholars, friend and colleague of famous author H.L.

Writing in the Familiar

The Best of Simple, Langston Hughes' stories about Jesse B. Semple, demonstrates the value and power of writing and telling what you know through observations. Semple editorializes about such topics as race, love, and politics. Hughes’ folksy wit and wisdom offered a vision of the world which gave black people a sense of hope in a hypocritical society. E.J. Stewart’s insight into Hughes’ observations draws parallels between his account of life in Harlem and her short story “Cheese,” written 60 years later, about life in rural eastern NC.

Requirements: 
Lectern, microphone, and if feasible, a wide-bottomed comfortable armchair

Literary Trails of the North Carolina Piedmont

Why has the Piedmont, and Charlotte in particular, produced so many writers of mystery and crime novels? How has the textile mill culture influenced Piedmont literature throughout the 20th and into the 21st century? What are the roots of North Carolina’s extraordinary proliferation of creative writers? Based on her guidebook by the same title, Georgann Eubanks answers these questions and takes readers on a literary tour of North Carolina’s Piedmont, past and present.

Requirements: 
Lectern, microphone, screen
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