Author Talk: Grievers | adrienne maree brown in conversation with Syreeta McFadden
Time & Location
About the Event
A tale of what happens when we can no longer ignore what has been lost in this world.
Grievers is the story of a city so plagued by grief that it can no longer function. Dune’s mother is patient zero of a mysterious illness that stops people in their tracks—in mid-sentence, mid-action, mid-life—casting them into a nonresponsive state from which no one recovers. Dune must navigate poverty and the loss of her mother as Detroit’s hospitals, morgues, and graveyards begin to overflow. As the quarantined city slowly empties of life, she investigates what caused the plague, and what might end it. In anguish, she follows in the footsteps of her late researcher father, who has a physical model of Detroit’s history and losses set up in their basement. She dusts the model off and begins tracking the sick and dying, discovering patterns, finding comrades in curiosity, conspiracies for the fertile ground of the city, and the unexpected magic that emerges when the debt of grief is cleared.
adrienne maree brown is a writer living in Detroit. She is a student of the works of Octavia E. Butler and Ursula K. Le Guin. Grievers is her first novel. Her previous books include Octavia’s Brood, Emergent Strategy, Pleasure Activism, and We Will Not Cancel Us. Her visionary fiction has appeared in The Funambulist, Harvard Design Review, and Dark Mountain.
Syreeta McFadden is a writer and professor of English at the City University of New York’s Borough of Manhattan Community College. Syreeta’s work deals mainly with gender, politics, race, and culture. Her work has been featured in the poetry anthology, BreakBeat Poets 2: Black Girl Magic from Haymarket Books, and the anthology Indelible in the Hippocampus: Writings From The Me Too Movement from McSweeney’s Press. Her essays and criticism have appeared in The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, NBC News’ THINK, New York Times Magazine, Elle, The Guardian, Brooklyn Magazine, and BuzzFeed News. She is a contributing editor for Guernica, a journal of literature and politics. She is currently writing a book-length collection of reported essays about African Americans in the Middle West.