Thanks to the generous support of Humanities NY, poet and Philmont resident Karen Schoemer will lead a reading and discussion group about the work of 20th century author James Baldwin. A novelist, essayist, poet and playwright, Baldwin is one of the most important American thinkers on the subject of race and democracy. His work continues to resonate through American literature, film, music and theater; his 1963 non-fiction book The Fire Next Time is a landmark of the civil rights movement.
The group will meet monthly, on second Wednesdays, in the Cultural Center at the Philmont Library from 7 – 8:30 pm. Copies of Baldwin’s Collected Essays and Early Novels and Stories will be available to borrow free of charge. The schedule is as follows: February 8, Introduction; March 8, Another Country; April 12, Nobody Knows My Name; May 10, Giovanni’s Room; June 14, The Fire Next Time. These sessions will allow participants to explore Baldwin's themes through their connection to our own lives. In addition to Baldwin’s works, Schoemer will bring in extracts of contemporary essays that show the pervasiveness of Baldwin’s influence.
Karen Schoemer is a poet, performer and author whose work has been widely published and anthologized. A former critic for the New York Times and Newsweek, she contributes words and vocals to the bands Sky Furrows, Jaded Azurites, and Ivan the Tolerable. Her non-fiction book Great Pretenders: My Strange Love Affair with ‘50s Pop Musicwas published by Free Press in 2006.
February 8 - Introduction
March 8 - Another Country
April 12 - Nobody knows My Name
May 10 - Giovanni's Room
June 14 - Fire Next Time