The African American Museum of Iowa and the Davenport Public Library have partnered for The Big Read, an initiative designed by the National Endowment for the Arts, to encourage people in the same vicinity to read the same book, and to talk about it. This year’s book, Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, is a feminist work about African American life in the early 1900s, and has inspired such great contemporary authors as Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, and Gloria Naylor.
The public is invited to the kick-off event on Wednesday, January 28, at 6:30 pm, at the Fairmount Street Library (3000 N. Fairmount Street). Keynote speaker, Dr. Catherine Stewart, Associate Professor and Chair of the History Department at Cornell College, will present, “Feast, Flood, and Famine: Zora Neale Hurston’s Search for African American Folk Culture.” Books, bookmarks, and study guides about this literary masterpiece will also be available.
For more information about upcoming Big Read programs, visit: www.davenportlibrary.com, or www.blackiowa.org. The NEA presents The Big Read in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and in cooperation with Arts Midwest. The purpose of this initiative is to restore reading to the center of American culture.