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Rae Paris: The Forgetting Tree: A Rememory
WhenThursday, Apr. 20, 2017, 3:30 – 5 p.m.
Campus locationThomson Hall (THO)
Campus roomTHO 119
Event typesLectures/Seminars
Event sponsorsEnglish Department
Description

The Forgetting Tree: A Rememory

In this talk Rae Paris, a Black writer from Carson, California, traces The
Forgetting Tree: A Rememory, a book she began writing in 2010, while traveling the United States, visiting sites of racial terror and resistance. The desire to do this work came from being a child of parents born and raised in New Orleans during segregation, who ultimately left for California in the late1950s. After the death of her father in 2011, the fiction Paris had been writing gave way to poetry and short prose, which were heavily influenced by the questions she’d long been considering about narrative, power, trauma, memory, and freedom. While Paris sometimes uses the genre of "memoir" or "hybrid memoir" when referring to her work, in this case the term "rememory," born from Toni Morrison’s Beloved, feels most accurate. Paris is driven by familial and historical spaces and by what happens when we remember seemingly
disparate images and moments.  The collection is not fully prose or poetry, but more of an extended funeral program, song, or a prayer for those who have passed through us and continue to guide us. The Forgetting Tree argues for a deeper understanding of past and present so that we might imagine a more hopeful, sustainable, and loving future for Black lives."

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