Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Corey Mesler’s Casting Call

Posted By on Wed, Apr 29, 2015 at 9:57 AM

There’s Memphis Movie, the working title of the film being made in the pages of Memphis Movie (Soft Skull Press), the new novel by Corey Mesler. And then there’s Memphis Movie, a hypothetical film version of Memphis Movie the book, and if such a film were made, its dream cast, according to Mesler, would read as follows:

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Eric Jerome Dickey: It Happened One Night

Posted By on Wed, Apr 22, 2015 at 12:37 PM

In last year's novel, A Wanted Woman (now in paperback), author Eric Jerome Dickey took readers on a wild, often very violent ride across the country and including Memphis, where his lead character, a woman named Reaper, once lived.

But as Dickey writes in the acknowledgments to his latest novel, this time out he wanted to “create something smaller, less populated, a novel that used fewer locations.” Then he adds:

“Did my best to leave out the guns. I did. I promise. I really tried.”

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Guillory at Rhodes

Posted By on Wed, Apr 22, 2015 at 12:12 PM

As professor of English at New York University, John Guillory has written extensively on literary theory, in addition to books and essays on early-modern European literature. His Cultural Capital: The Problem of Literary Canon Formation (1993) also won him widespread recognition. But when Guillory visits Rhodes College on Thursday, April 23rd, he’ll be turning to art historian Erwin Panofsky, whose essay “The History of Art as a Humanistic Discipline” (1940) will be Guillory’s jumping-off point in a lecture titled “Monuments and Documents: On the Object of Study in the Humanities.” Guillory’s talk — free and open to the public — is at 6 p.m. inside Blount Auditorium of Rhodes’ Buckman Hall. •

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Bookstock 2015

Posted By on Wed, Apr 15, 2015 at 9:33 AM

Bookstock — now in its fifth year at the Benjamin L. Hooks Central Library — is this Saturday, but it’s more like a series of events, free and open to all. Featured national speakers will be young-adult novelist and American Library Association Lifetime Achievement honoree Patricia McKissack; best-selling novelist Mary Monroe; and Charles Graeber, author of The Good Nurse, a true-life tale of “medicine, madness, and murder.”

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

WKNO To Air “Greenhorn”

Posted By on Tue, Apr 14, 2015 at 10:11 AM

Those who have read Anna Olswanger’s Greenhorn know that the author — a native Memphian and literary agent in the New York area — based the book on a true tale of two boys: one a stutterer bullied by his classmates at a New York City yeshiva just after World War II; the other a Polish survivor of the war who keeps a mysterious box by his side.

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Saturday, April 4, 2015

Newstok Takes Stock of the “Mountaintop”

Posted By on Sat, Apr 4, 2015 at 11:19 AM


“A cosmopolitan heritage that belongs to us all” is how Scott Newstok, associate professor of English at Rhodes College, describes it: our shared cultural history. That’s one of the main points he makes in an essay called “The Crafts of Freedom,” which was recently posted on Chapter 16, a website devoted to Tennessee “writers, readers & passersby.”

It’s a timely post, because the subject of Newstok’s essay is the “Mountaintop” speech delivered by Martin Luther King Jr. on the evening before he was shot and killed in Memphis. Newstok looks at that eloquent, impassioned speech in terms of its artistry — the art of rhetoric. But he reminds us too of the tradition that went into it — the tradition of a liberal-arts education, the education King received at Morehouse College, Crozer Theological Seminary, and Boston University.

Today, April 4, 2015, first read Newstok’s essay here. Then return to the “Mountaintop” here, but for the full force of King’s speech: hear. •

Friday, April 3, 2015

Steele Magnolias

Posted By on Fri, Apr 3, 2015 at 2:33 PM

“If something happens and I need to speak, I just speak,” says Tennie S. Self, 89, of Clarksdale, Mississippi. That’s what Self has to say in a promo video for a new book featuring more than 50 “jewels” — Delta Jewels: In Search of My Grandmother’s Wisdom (Center Street) by photojournalist and author Alysia Burton Steele.

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