Georgia State Literary Festival Showcases ‘Lost’ Southern Writers
ATLANTA—Georgia State University will host “Revival: Lost Southern Voices Festival,” a two-day literary festival celebrating underappreciated writers of Southern poetry and prose, on Friday, March 31, and Saturday, April 1, at the university’s Dunwoody Campus.
The event is free and open to the public, but registration is encouraged.
The festival will feature more than two dozen contemporary Southern writers and scholars paying tribute to writers they consider overlooked or missing from the canon of Southern literature.
“If your name was not Faulkner, O’Connor or Williams, you could not write about the South and expect to be embraced by the publishing industry,” said event co-chair Andy Rogers, assistant professor of English. “The idea behind the festival is to highlight great American writers whose work deserves new audiences.”
Rogers’ co-chair of the event is Pearl McHaney, Georgia State’s Kenneth M. England Professor of Southern Literature.
Speakers include:Poet and author Natasha Trethewey. Trethewey is a Pulitzer-prize recipient and was U.S. Poet Laureate from 2012 to 2014. She is the the Robert W. Woodruff Professor of English and Creative Writing at Emory University. She will read from the work of Claudia Emerson and Margaret Walker.
Poet and professor Yusef Komunyakaa. Komunyakaa won the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for Neon Vernacular, the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Prize, and has been a National Book Award Finalist. His recent collections include Pleasure Dome, The Emperor of Water Clocks, and The Chameleon. Komunyakaa is the Global Distinguished Professor of English at New York University. He will discuss and read from the work of George Moses Horton during his festival appearance on Saturday, April 1.
Atlanta playwright, Neeley Gossett. Gossett will direct a staged reading of “Florence” by Alice Childress. Gossett works as a teaching artist at the Alliance Theatre, where her play, “Alice Between,” will make its world premiere this fall. She is a Georgia State English instructor.Author David Shields, recipient of Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships. Shields’ work, “I Think You’re Totally Wrong: A Quarrel,” was released this year as a film by James Franco. Shields will read from the work of writer Barry Hannah.
Author Terry Kay. Kay is a Georgia Writers Hall of Fame and Governor’s Humanities Award recipient and author of more than 15 books, including, “To Dance with the White Dog” and “The Book of Marie.” Three of his novels have been produced as Hallmark Hall of Fame movies. Kay will read from the work of Ralph McGill and Erskine Caldwell.The festival is supported in part by a grant from the Georgia Humanities Council, in partnership with the Georgia Department of Economic Development through funding from the Georgia General Assembly.
Other support includes:
The Georgia State College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of English, the Kenneth M. England Professorship in Southern Literature, The South Atlantic Center for the Institute of the Americas, The Chattahoochee Review at Georgia State’s Perimeter College, Perimeter College Department of English, Georgia State’s Honors College, The Atlanta Writers Club, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Decatur Book Festival, the Inge Foundation, Alison Law Communications and Muse/A Journal.