We hope you enjoy this month’s Humanities Broadsheet — compilation of events organized by or featuring members of the Washington University community, as well as our colleagues in the greater humanities community in the St. Louis area. 


With the restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, many public events have moved online during the fall of 2021. Things change quickly these days, so we recommend you check with organizers for the latest details before you head out or log on.


As you’ll see below, there’s always something going on! 


Organizers may submit events to cenhumcal@wustl.edu.
Visitors to Washington University should be aware of the university’s Health and Safety Protocols.


Humanities Broadcast

The Humanities Broadcast section spotlights virtual public events featuring WashU faculty and scholars in the humanities and humanistic social sciences, organized by internal and external hosts. If you are a faculty member with an upcoming public lecture that will be broadcast virtually, please let us know and we will include it here! Email us at cenhumcal@wustl.edu and please include the URL for the event page at your host institution.


1 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
Countering Legacies of Racial Violence
Does anti-racist memory work offer a durable antidote to legacies of racial violence? It is clear from scholarship in the humanities, social sciences, health sciences and other fields that we remain haunted by histories of racialized violence, socially embodying and reproducing historical trauma. In this talk, Geoff Ward — professor of African and African-American studies; faculty affiliate in sociology and American Culture studies; and director of the WashU & Slavery Project — will discuss his collaborative work to advance understanding of these legacies and increasing focus on redress. Department of African and African-American Studies.

1 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
I’m not Black, but I can feel it, too!: Sensing Ancestrality and Cross-racial Belonging in Capoeira Angola
ESTHER VIOLA KURTZ, assistant professor of music, Washington University, explores embodied and temporal aspects of call, response and response(ability) in capoeira Angola, the Afro-Brazilian music-movement form. For many Black players in Bahia, Brazil, moving in the capoeira circle summons powerful sensations of “ancestrality” and visceral images of a lived past under enslavement. This calls them to imagine and fight for a better future, one in which Black lives have value. White practitioners also claim to sense ancestrality while playing capoeira, suggesting that the affective experience of moving together may foster cross-racial belonging. By revealing how diverse practitioners respond differently to the call of ancestrality, she argues that experiences of moving and listening are racialized in the afterlife of slavery. Department of Music.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Music Classroom Building 102

1 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Performing for God and Country: Branson Entertainment and the Rise of the Christian Right
JOANNA DEE DAS, assistant professor of dance, Washington University, examines how performers in the popular tourist destination of Branson, Missouri, manifest the idea of “family values,” a key phrase in the lexicon of the Christian Right political movement in the United States. Over the past 60 years, Branson shows such as the Baldknobbers Hillbilly Jamboree and Presleys’ Country Jubilee have created experiences for their audiences that tie normative ideas of family to support for free market capitalism and a narrow, racialized definition of American citizenship. At the same time, this talk will examine the tension inherent in performing normative “family values” in the queer space of the theatre. Performing Arts Department.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Umrath Hall, Room 140

1 OCTOBER  |  5 PM
Black Feminist Sociology: Perspectives and Praxis – Book Launch
We are thrilled to invite you to the virtual launch for Black Feminist Sociology: Perspectives and Praxis, co-edited by Zakiya Luna (Washington University in St. Louis) and Whitney Pirtle (University of California, Merced). Black Feminist Sociology brings together a diverse set of established and emerging scholars for a timely, accessible and intellectually stimulating conversation regarding the foundations and state of Black feminist sociological thought. The launch includes remarks by contributing authors and the team who brought this innovative collection together: Rose Brewer, Assata Richards, Blu Buchanan, Zakiya Luna, Whitney Pirtle, Jasmine Kelekay, Melissa Brown and Tashelle Wright. For more info or questions, visit blackfeministsociology.com or email us at BlackFeministSociology@gmail.com.

5 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Americanist Dinner Forum: Race and K12 Education
How should race be addressed in K12 classrooms in America? That question — which has proved so controversial over the past year — raises fundamental questions about the contentious role of public education in America. Lisa Gilbert, a lecturer in the Department of Education, Washington University; Lauren Obermark, associate professor of English, University of Missouri – St. Louis; and Chloe Telle, English and writing teacher of Webster Groves High School, will address this question and more. American Culture Studies.

5 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Jackie Kay, Bessie Smith: A Poet’s Biography of a Blues Legend (Author Talk)
JACKIE KAY will be in conversation with Gerald Early, the Merle Kling Professor of Modern Letters at Washington University. Scotland’s National Poet, Jackie Kay blends poetry and prose to create a unique biography of the Empress of the Blues in Bessie Smith: A Poet’s Biography of a Blues Legend. Born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in 1854, Bessie Smith sang on street corners before becoming a big name in traveling shows. Her first recording with Columbia Records sold 780,000 copies and catapulted her to fame. Known for tough persona and her ability to enrapture audiences with her raw voice, the Empress of the Blues remains a force and an enigma. Kay creates an enthralling account of an extraordinary life and captures the soul of the woman she first identified with as a young Black girl growing up in Glasgow. St. Louis County Library, HEC Media and Left Bank Books.

7 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
A Marvelous Work: Reading Mormonism in West Africa
LAURIE MAFFLY-KIPP, the Archer Alexander Distinguished Professor & Interim Dean and Vice Provost for Graduate Education, Washington University. Maffly-Kipp’s lecture will discuss how the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints pamphlets, books and other church materials circulated in West Africa two decades before offical missionary work began, leading to a unique “native” Mormonism. Believers crafted churches from these bare materials and doctrinal interpretations during the 1960s and 1970s. The lecture will also be broadcasted live at youtube.com/USULibraries. Utah State University Libraries’ Leonard J. Arrington Mormon History Lecture series.


11 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Peter H. Raven, Driven by Nature: Dr. Peter Raven’s Journey in Botany and Global Sustainability (Author Talk)
PETER H. RAVEN, Missouri Botanical Garden’s president emeritus and the George Engelmann Professor of Botany Emeriti at Washington University, will discuss his newly released autobiography that takes readers across multiple continents and decades. Driven by Nature follows the globetrotting botanist from China to the American Midwest as he works to foster concern for a changing planet, further the cause of biological education and build the Missouri Botanical Garden into the world-renowned haven for plant life it is today. Barbara Schaal, the Mary-Dell Chilton Distinguished Professor at Washington University and a nationally recognized plant evolutionary biologist, will lead our discussion with Peter Raven expanding on the autobiography and his relationship with WashU through his many years of work in Missouri and around the world. Left Bank Books.

13 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
International Writers Series: Mary Jo Bang
MARY JO BANG, a nationally recognized author of eight books of poems and professor of English at Washington University, will present her recent translation of Dante’s Purgatorio. Her adaptation of Purgatorio is the extraordinary continuation of her journey with Dante, which began with her transformative version of Inferno. In her signature lyric style, accompanied by her wise and exuberant notes, Bang has produced a stunning translation of this 14-century text, rich with references that span time, languages and cultures. Bang will be joined in discussion by Aaron Coleman, who received his PhD in Comparative Literature and MFA in poetry from Washington University. University Libraries.

20 OCTOBER  |  4:30 PM
Faculty Book Talk: Henry I. Schvey
HENRY SCHVEY, professor of drama and comparative literature, Washington University, discusses his latest book, Blue Song: St. Louis in the Life and Work of Tennessee Williams. In 2011, the centennial of Tennessee Williams’s birth, events were held around the world honoring America’s greatest playwright. There were festivals, conferences and exhibitions held in places closely associated with Williams’ life and career. But absolutely nothing was done to celebrate Williams’ life and extraordinary literary and theatrical career in the place that he lived in longest, and called home longer than any other — St. Louis, Missouri. The question of this paradox lies at the heart of this book, an attempt not so much to correct the record about Williams’ well-chronicled dislike of the city, but rather to reveal how the city was absolutely indispensable to his formation and development both as a person and artist. University Libraries.

21 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
Fear and Loathing in New Spain: Antiblackness in Colonial Mexico
MIGUEL A. VALERIO is an assistant professor of Spanish at Washington University. His work has appeared in several journals, including Slavery and Abolition and Colonial Latin American Review. He is currently completing a book on Afro-Mexican festive practices, “Sovereign Joy: Afro-Mexican Festive Practices, 1539–1640,” under contract with Cambridge University Press. Besides exploring black joy and communal sovereignty, the book studies how Iberian racial ideology impacted Afro-Mexicans’ daily and festive lives. Region and Enmity: A RaceB4Race Symposium, October 19–22, 2021. This interdisciplinary symposium, hosted by Rutgers University, focuses on how premodern racial discourses are tied to cartographical markers and ambitions. The notions of enmity and region provide a dual dynamic lens for tracing the racial repertoires that developed in response to increasingly hostile contention between premodern cultural and political forces. The symposium will invite scholars to take up this intersection between region and enmity, and to examine how belief in difference, or the emergence of polarizing structures and violent practices, configured race thinking and racial practices in ways that are both unique to different territories and that transcend them.

21 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Patrick Burke, Tear Down the Walls: White Radicalism and Black Power in 1960s Rock (Author Talk)
From the earliest days of rock and roll, white artists regularly achieved fame, wealth, and success that eluded the Black artists whose work had preceded and inspired them. This dynamic continued into the 1960s, even as the music and its fans grew to be more engaged with political issues regarding race. In Tear Down the Walls: White Radicalism and Black Power in 1960s Rock, Patrick Burke tells the story of white American and British rock musicians’ engagement with Black Power politics and African American music during the volatile years of 1968 and 1969. The book sheds new light on a significant but overlooked facet of 1960s rock — white musicians and audiences casting themselves as political revolutionaries by enacting a romanticized vision of African American identity. Patrick Burke is associate professor of music at Washington University. Subterranean Books.
IN PERSON: Subterranean Books, 6271 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 63130

21 OCTOBER  |  8 PM
Faculty Reading: G’Ra Asim & Niki Herd
G’Ra Asim, a writer and musician, is an assistant professor of creative writing at Washington University. His nonfiction debut, Boyz n the Void: a mixtape to my brother, was released in May via Beacon Press. His work has appeared in Slate, Salon, Guernica, The Baffler, and The New Republic. When not writing prose or teaching, he sings, plays bass, and writes lyrics for DIY pop punk quintet, babygotbacktalk. Niki Herd, visiting writer in residence at Washington University, is the author of The Language of Shedding Skin. Herd co-edited with Meg Day Laura Hershey: On the Life & Work of an American Master. Winner of the 2021 Inprint Donald Barthelme Prize in Nonfiction, Herd’s poetry, essays, and criticism appear in or are forthcoming from Oxford University Press, Lit Hub, The Rumpus and Salon, among other journals and anthologies.

22 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
WashU Faculty Patrick Burke & Lauren Eldridge Stewart
Two talks by faculty members of the Department of Music at Washington University. Patrick Burke, associate professor of music, will give a talk on “Kongolandsbyen: Senegalese Music in Norway during the Age of Empire.” Lauren Eldridge Stewart, assistant professor of music, gives a talk titled “Whose Mizik Klasik? Classical Music and the Boundaries of Genre in Haiti.” Department of Music.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Music Classroom Building 102

27 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Embrace Everything: A Conversation with Aaron Cohen about Mahler and the Art of Podcasting
Join us for a conversation with Aaron Cohen, director of programming operations at New York Public Radio and producer of the podcast Embrace Everything: The World of Gustav Mahler, led by Caroline Kita, associate professor of German and comparative literature, Washington University. The discussion will focus on Cohen’s chart-topping podcast (now in its second season), which celebrates the life and music of Gustav Mahler (1860–1911) through an in-depth exploration of his symphonies. The podcast features commentary from leading scholars, musicians, composers and conductors from the U.S. and Europe. Find out about Mahler’s music, the creation of the podcast and Cohen’s career trajectory from professional musician to radio producer. Co-sponsored by the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, the Department of Music, and the Program in Comparative Literature.

28 OCTOBER  |  7 PM 
Colson Whitehead, Harlem Shuffle (Author Talk)
COLSON WHITEHEAD will be in conversation with G’Ra Asim, assistant professor of English, Washington University. From the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author comes a novel of heists, shakedowns and rip-offs set in Harlem in the 1960s. Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked. To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding salesman of reasonably priced furniture, making a decent life for himself and his family. He and his wife Elizabeth are expecting their second child, and if her parents on Striver’s Row don’t approve of him or their cramped apartment across from the subway tracks, it’s still home. Few people know he descends from a line of uptown hoods and crooks, and that his façade of normalcy has more than a few cracks in it. Cracks that are getting bigger all the time. Cash is tight, especially with all those installment-plan sofas, so if his cousin Freddie occasionally drops off the odd ring or necklace, Ray doesn’t ask where it comes from. He knows a discreet jeweler downtown who doesn’t ask questions, either. Then Freddie falls in with a crew who plan to rob the Hotel Theresa — the Waldorf of Harlem — and volunteers Ray’s services as the fence. The heist does’'t go as planned; they rarely do. Now Ray has a new clientele, one made up of shady cops, vicious local gangsters, two-bit pornographers and other assorted Harlem lowlifes. Thus begins the internal tussle between Ray the striver and Ray the crook. As Ray navigates this double life, he begins to see who actually pulls the strings in Harlem. Can Ray avoid getting killed, save his cousin and grab his share of the big score, all while maintaining his reputation as the go-to source for all your quality home furniture needs? Book purchase required. Left Bank Books.
IN PERSON: .ZACK, 3224 Locust St., St. Louis, 63103

WashU Events

4 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Divided City Graduate Fellows Colloquium
We invite you to listen to a series of PechaKucha style presentations on the research of Divided City Summer Graduate Fellows. PechaKucha is a presentation format where 20 images are shown each for 20 seconds, keeping presentations concise and fast paced. Graduate students in the humanities, humanistic social sciences, architecture, urban design and landscape architecture will present their summer research on urban segregation.  

5 OCTOBER  |  5 PM    
Fear of the Muslim Planet: Global Islamophobia in the New World Order
Join us for a conversation with author and human rights lawyer Arsalan Iftikhar, who will discuss his book Fear of the Muslim Planet: Global Islamophobia in the New World Order. This event is presented by the Washington University School of Law Public Interest Law & Policy Speaker Series; Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute; Weidenbaum Center for Economy, Government & Public Policy; and John C. Danforth Center on Religion & Politics.

7 OCTOBER  |  12:30 PM
Pari in Perpetuity: Peeling Back the Layers of Agricultural Policy in a Prayerful Way
Join Brown School Buder Alumna (MSW, 2009) Electa Hare-RedCorn (Pawnee) for a discussion of how Native women are changing policy in land stewardship by acknowledging and implementing just transitions in agricultural development. The first 100 guests for this webinar will have an opportunity to receive a complimentary copy of Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass book. Indigenous Knowledge and Sustainability 2021 Conference, co-sponsored by the Kathryn M. Buder Center and Brown School.

7 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
An Evening with Danielle Allen
DANIELLE ALLEN, the James Bryant Conant University Professor at Harvard University and director of Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, is a political theorist who has published broadly in democratic theory, political sociology and the history of political thought. Co-sponsored by the Weidenbaum Center on the Economy, Government and Public Policy and Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity & Equity.

8 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
Singing the Black Pacific: Afro-Indigenous Connections and the Study of Global Music History
Over the course of the “long” 20th century, beginning with a multi-year residency by the Fisk Jubilee Singers in Australia and New Zealand in the 1890s and continuing to today, Black music from the U.S. and the West Indies has been a crucial resource for Indigenous artists and activists in the Southwestern Pacific. This presentation traces the outlines of this music’s role as an expressive vehicle for aesthetic and ethical concerns. Gabriel Solis — professor of music, African American studies, American Indian studies, and anthropology at University of Illinois — considers how this music has entwined Afrodiasporic and Indigenous people, developing community, providing the pleasures of sonic repetition and difference, and articulating politics of liberation and sovereignty. Beyond describing his case study, this talk will focus on the methodological questions raised by the growing literature of global music history, and the recent critiques of the coloniality and ethnocentrism of the 20th century’s musicological disciplines: music history, ethnomusicology and music theory. WUSTL Music’s 75th Anniversary, Department of Music.
IN PERSON: Music Classroom Building 102

9 OCTOBER  |  11 AM
Public Tour: The Outwin: American Portraiture Today
Join student educator Jay Buchanan, graduate student in the Department of Art History & Archaeology at Washington University, for an online tour of The Outwin: American Portraiture Today. This exhibition features the finalists of the National Portrait Gallery’s fifth triennial Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition. The selected portraits in a variety of media respond to the current political and social context, offering perspectives on a range of themes of sociopolitical relevance, including immigration, the status of American workers, mass incarceration, gun violence and LGBTQ+ rights.

9 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Farming, Gardening and Food Sovereignty in Native American Communities
DEVON MIHESUAH and Elizabeth Hoover are co-editors of Indigenous Food Sovereignty in the United States: Restoring Cultural Knowledge, Protecting Environments, and Regaining Health. Mihesuah, is a member of the Choctaw Nation, is the Cora Lee Beers Price Professor in International Cultural Understanding at the University of Kansas. Hoover is an associate professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy & Management at the University of California Berkeley. This event is part of the Indigenous Knowledge & Sustainability | Food conference.

11 OCTOBER  |  2 PM
Sisters of Carceral Liberation
BREEA WILLINGHAM is an interdisciplinary scholar and criminal justice professor whose teaching and research examines the intersections of race, gender, higher education and the criminal injustice system. She is particularly interested in examining Black women’s experiences with higher education in prison and amplifying the voices of Black women impacted by the injustice system. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

13 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
SYRITA STEIB started Operation Restoration in 2016 to eradicate the roadblocks she faced when returning to society after incarceration. Syrita serves as the executive director and is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs and strategic plan of the organization. She created Operation Restoration because of her experience with the legal system. At the age of 19, Syrita was sentenced to 120 months in federal prison. After serving nearly 10 years in prison, she was released into a community vastly different than the one she left. Other formerly incarcerated women helped her to readjust to the world she had left behind. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

14 OCTOBER  |  12:30 PM
Artificial Intelligence: Applications, Promises, Pitfalls and Misperceptions
RUOPENG AN, associate professor, Brown School, Washington University. Artificial intelligence (AI), characterized by machine and deep learning, has swept in today’s society like a perfect storm, leaving no stone unturned. From pizza delivery to crime control, from creative arts to chatbot companion, from autonomous driving to auto-trading, AI is already present in many facets of our lives. Of the many views of the future of AI, what version should we believe, if any? Should we embrace it, or should we fear it? Join us for a discussion of the enduring myths and debates surrounding AI. Brown School Open School.

14 OCTOBER  |  3 PM
Cutting Through the Stereotypes of Incarcerated People
GRANT E. TIETJEN is an associate professor in the St. Ambrose University–Davenport Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, and also has direct criminal justice system contact. He has written, researched and lectured on convict criminology, mass incarceration, class inequality, criminological theory and pathways to correctional/postcorrectional education. He has published in multiple peer reviewed journals, book chapters and academic encyclopedias; with multiple works in progress. Tietjen’s most recent peer reviewed research has been published in The Prison Journal and Critical Criminology. Tietjen has been involved with the Convict Criminology (CC) group since 2005, mentoring new CC members, and serving as the group’s co-chair from 2017–19. Further, in 2020, he was appointed the inaugural chair of the newly formed American Society of Criminology Division of Convict Criminology. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

14 OCTOBER  |  5:30 PM
Isolation, Bisected: Dan Graham’s Pavilion at Washington University
Dan Graham’s Bisected Circle investigates isolation and community through space, subjectivity and self-awareness. While not created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the artwork is especially poignant during this time of social distancing and physical isolation. Composed of curving two-way mirror glass, Bisected Circle distorts our sense of what’s real and what’s reflected and places its viewers in solitude while simultaneously putting them in conversation with their surroundings. This talk by Margaret Crocker, graduate student in the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University, will situate Bisected Circle within the history of public art and land art to explore its presence on our campus. By interacting with the artwork (weather permitting), attendees can experience the ways community and solitude coalesce in a work of art. Kemper Art Museum.
IN PERSON: Florence Steinberg Weil Sculpture Garden (weather permitting)

15 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
Prioritizing Higher Education and Career Goals in Prison & Reentry
TERRELL A. BLOUNT is a motivational speaker, mentor and advocate for quality postsecondary education and career opportunities and policy change affecting justice-involved people. Approaching the completion of a six-year sentence, Blount pursued his goal of graduating with a college degree, which he set for himself years before being released from prison. “I just kept telling myself: ‘If I can do five years in prison, I can do five years in college.’” Soon, he found himself a BA graduate of the School of Communication & Information (SCI) and later, achieving his MPA in nonprofit management from the School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA), both at Rutgers University. Today, he serves as the director of the Formerly Incarcerated College Graduates Network, a nonprofit organization supporting postsecondary education attainment among justice-involved individuals, while connecting formerly incarcerated students and professionals across the country. A leader in the higher education and justice space, Blount participates on various steering committees and advisory boards and has experience in policy change and advocacy, program administration, philanthropy and college reentry programs. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

15 OCTOBER  |  8 PM
Chinese-Language Tour: The Outwin—American Portraiture Today
Join student educator Yue Dai, PhD student in the Department of Art History & Archaeology at Washington University, for an online tour of The Outwin: American Portraiture Today. This exhibition features the finalists of the National Portrait Gallery’s fifth triennial Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition. The selected portraits in a variety of media respond to the current political and social context, offering perspectives on a range of themes of sociopolitical relevance, including immigration, the status of American workers, mass incarceration, gun violence and LGBTQ+ rights. Kemper Art Museum.

18 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
The Transformative and Rehabilitative Power of Higher Education in Prison
BRYAN JORDAN was born and raised in the city of New Haven, Conn. He is the oldest of five siblings: two brothers and two sisters. After dropping out of high school, he received his GED while incarcerated in 1994. However, in 2016, while serving a sentence that would later be overturned, he was accepted into Second Chance Educational Alliance to pursue higher education in prison. Subsequently, Jordan went on to be 1 of 600 inmates to apply and be accepted into Yale University. Since his release, he has begun the enrollment process into Yale in pursuit of a law degree. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

20 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
Trauma, Incarceration and Ability to Learn
EM DANIELS is a master educator and leading expert on the impacts of trauma on adult learning. They are a skilled facilitator and speaker, with an extensive background in adult education that includes alternative high schools, prisons, free college campuses, private and nonprofit organizations, government institutions and community agencies. Their expertise focuses on countering the impacts of trauma on learning by expanding beyond a mental health approach and defining multiple points of entry to the work. Daniels emphasizes the necessity of addressing individual and systemic trauma as crucial to create and sustain a just and compassionate world. Inaugural Maggie Garb Lecture Series, Washington University Prison Education Program.

20 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Longevity for the World: Self and the Social Body in Early Modern China
Self-perfection and immortality are central to understanding Chinese medical history, but He Bian (Ch. 邊和), associate professor of History and East Asian Studies at Princeton University, highlights the rise of the social body and techniques for the masses. Bian is a historian of late imperial and a historian of science. She earned her doctorate in history of science from Harvard University in 2014. Her research interests span many topics pertaining to the question of authority and variation in China’s traditional culture, particularly in medicine and the natural sciences, between the 16th and 19th centuries. Bernard Becker Medical Library.

She Kills Monsters
Agnes rediscovers the true character of her deceased kid sister Tilly in this delightful “Dungeons and Dragons” journey filled with Succubae, Faeries and Bugbears. The New York Times called the show “kind of dopey and kind of invigorating and kind of remarkable. It will slash and shapeshift its way into your heart.” October 22, 23, 29 & 30 at 8 p.m. October 24 & 31 at 2 p.m.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Edison Theatre

22 OCTOBER  |  2 PM
Theology and Literary Invention
In this talk, Wolfram Schmidgen, professor of English at Washington University, argues that modern literary practices were shaped by religion. Voluntarism, a theology that emphasized a willful creator and denied that nature embodied truth and beauty, radicalized literary invention in the early eighteenth century. It allowed such writers as Richard Blackmore, John Locke, Jonathan Swift, and Daniel Defoe to invert the rules of composition and let energy dominate structure, matter create form, and parts be valued over the whole. In this way, voluntarism helped establish the literary value of the deformed, the infinite, and the counterfactual. Department of English.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Duncker Hall, Room 201 (Hurst Lounge)

22 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Designing the Modern City: Urbanism Since 1850
This faculty publication discussion will center on Designing the Modern City: Urbanism Since 1850, written by Eric P. Mumford, the Rebecca and John Voyles Professor of Architecture, Washington University. The comprehensive survey traces the global history of urbanism and urban design from the industrial revolution to the present. As part of the event, several invited panelists will share their perspectives on how architects have attempted to shape the form of cities under the ongoing conditions of modernization. Each speaker will focus on how a topic from the book relates to design issues that they have addressed or considered in their practice or considered as historians. Robert McCarter, the Ruth and Norman Moore Professor of Architecture, will serve as moderator. Sam Fox School.
IN PERSON: Weil Hall, Kuehner Court

23 OCTOBER  |  11 AM
Artists Jess T. Dugan and David Antonio Cruz with Amber Johnson
The Outwin artists Jess T. Dugan and David Antonio Cruz join Amber Johnson, professor of communication and social justice and associate provost, division of diversity and community engagement at Saint Louis University, to discuss representing friends, family and activists in the queer community, as well as how the artists’ work disrupts the traditionally heteronormative genre of portraiture by centering queer bodies and queer intimacy. Kemper Art Museum.

24 OCTOBER  |  2 PM
Public Tour: New on View
Join student educator Leslie Liu (Sam Fox School ’22) for an online tour featuring new installations in the Kemper Art Museum’s permanent collection galleries, including modern and contemporary painting, sculpture, and photography. Kemper Art Museum.

26 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Nosferatu the Vampyre
Quite fitting to the month of October, we will screen Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979), one of Herzog’s best-known features. The real estate agent Jonathon Harker must make his way to Transylvania to complete an odd, but lucrative land deal. But he has no way of knowing what awaits him after his arduous journey… German Film Series, Department of German.

28 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Art Movement - Online Premier
How does art encourage us to move and be moved? Experience the role of art as a catalyst for movement — embodied, political, and social — with artists from Consuming Kinetics Dance Company as they respond to selected portraits in The Outwin: American Portraiture Today. The dance performance will open the conversation between artist, subject, and viewer and invite us to consider our relationships to one another. Kemper Art Museum.

29 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
Engendering War: Strategies and Tactics in the Cuban and Nicaraguan Revolutions
Guerrillas and states alike deploy gendered tactics in war, yet these are often later obscured in the official war stories that focus on battlefield heroics. Similarly, the scholarly literature gravitates towards bullets, bombs and maneuvers while ignoring war’s political and discursive components. In this talk, Lorraine Bayard de Volo explore revolutionary struggles for “hearts and minds,” in which gender differences are magnified, minimized or otherwise reshaped to best address the perceived needs of militarization. In Cuba and Nicaragua, rebels and the revolutionary states used gender tactics — drawing on both femininity and masculinity — to demoralize enemy soldiers, recruit new combatants, mobilize support among the nation at large and sway the foreign policy of other nations. Examining gender tactics in war enhances our understanding of how wars are waged and won and how this, in turn, constrains postwar efforts at gender equality. GS X SIR Speaker Series, Global Studies program.
IN PERSON: Washington University, Seigle Hall, Room 301

St. Louis Community Events

2 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Requiem of Light COVID-19 Memorial Concert
The Requiem of Light COVID-19 Memorial Concert is being held to honor the nearly 3,000 people who have died from COVID-19 in the St. Louis region. It will feature music by a wide diversity of acclaimed local artists, testimonials from members of the community, and words of condolence and healing by interfaith leaders. A lantern-lighting ceremony will follow the speakers at sundown. Special performances by Denise Thimes, De-Rance Blaylock, Duane Foster, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, and the Resurrection of Life choir will be interwoven with memorial sermons and addresses from Rev. Traci Blackmon, Maharat Rori Picker Neiss, Rt. Rev. Deon K. Johnson, Mayor Tishuara Jones and many others. This program is co-presented by St. Louisans Rebecca Messbarger and Dr. Philip A. Woodmore, with programming support from Resurrection of Life Church, the Missouri Historical Society and Nine PBS. Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Art Hill, 35-43 Fine Arts Dr., St. Louis, 63110

4 OCTOBER  |  1:30 PM
Young Frankenstein Screening & Discussion
An American grandson of the infamous scientist, struggling to prove that his grandfather was not as insane as people believe, is invited to Transylvania, where he discovers the process that reanimates a dead body. Film critic Jim Batts will lead a post-screening talk of the winning film. Monday Matinee Classic Film Series.
IN-PERSON: St. Louis Public Library – Buder Library, 4401 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, 63109

4 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Kristin Henning with Justin Hansford, Rage of Innocence: How America Criminalizes Black Youth (Author Talk)
Left Bank Books welcome nationally recognized trainer and consultant on the intersection of race, adolescence, and policing, Kristin Henning, who will be in conversation with law professor at Howard Law and executive director of the Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Center, Justin Hansford. Drawing upon 25 years of experience representing Black youth in Washington, D.C.’s juvenile courts, Kristin Henning confronts America’s irrational, manufactured fears of these young people and makes a powerfully compelling case that the crisis in racist American policing begins with its relationship to Black children. Henning explains how discriminatory and aggressive policing has socialized a generation of Black teenagers to fear, resent and resist the police, and she details the long-term consequences of racism that they experience at the hands of the police and their vigilante surrogates. She makes clear that unlike white youth, who are afforded the freedom to test boundaries, experiment with sex and drugs, and figure out who they are and who they want to be, Black youth are seen as a threat to white America and are denied healthy adolescent development. She examines the criminalization of Black adolescent play and sexuality, and of Black fashion, hair and music. She limns the effects of police presence in schools and the depth of police-induced trauma in Black adolescents. Left Bank Books.

5 OCTOBER  |  5:30 PM
Transformational Power of the Arts
A play, a musical performance, a work of art, a poem. How can any of these possibly transform a life, a community or our society at large? Join the Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund to learn why Nancy and Ken Kranzberg, founders of the Kranzberg Arts Foundation, became arts philanthropists whose contributions have transformed our region in numerous ways. We also welcome Pianos for People Executive Director Matt Brinkman, who will share the story of how this organization’s program impacts students’ lives. All are welcome to attend. Registration required. $10. The Spirit of St. Louis Women’s Fund (SOS) strengthens the St. Louis community through informed, focused grantmaking by educating and inspiring women to engage in significant giving. Membership is open to all women.
IN-PERSON: Grand Center, The High Low, 3301 Washington Ave., St. Louis, 63103

5 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Jayne Allen with Tia Williams, Black Girls Must Die Exhausted (Author Talk)
JAYNE ALLEN will be in conversation with best-selling novelist Tia Williams. Black Girls Must Die Exhausted is the first novel in a captivating three-book series about modern womanhood, in which a young Black woman must rely on courage, laughter and love — and the support of her two longtime friends — to overcome an unexpected setback that threatens the most precious thing she’s ever wanted. Tabitha Walker is a black woman with a plan to “have it all.” At 33 years old, the checklist for the life of her dreams is well underway. Education? Check. Good job? Check. Down payment for a nice house? Check. Dating marriage material? Check, check and check. With a coveted position as a local news reporter, a paper-perfect boyfriend and even a standing Saturday morning appointment with a reliable hairstylist, everything seems to be falling into place. Then Tabby receives an unexpected diagnosis that brings her picture-perfect life crashing down, jeopardizing the keystone she took for granted: having children. With her dreams at risk of falling through the cracks of her checklist, suddenly she is faced with an impossible choice between her career, her dream home and a family of her own. With the help of her best friends, the irreverent and headstrong Laila and Alexis, the mom jeans-wearing former Sexy Lexi, and the generational wisdom of her grandmother and the nonagenarian firebrand Ms. Gretchen, Tabby explores the reaches of modern medicine and tests the limits of her relationships, hoping to salvage the future she always dreamed of. But the fight is all consuming, demanding a steep price that forces an honest reckoning for nearly everyone in her life. As Tabby soon learns, her grandmother’s age-old adage just might still be true: Black girls must die exhausted. Left Bank Books.

6 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Jocelyn Nicole Johnson with Walter Mosley, My Monticello (Author Talk)
JOCELYN NICOLE JOHNSON will be in conversation with critically acclaimed award-winning author Walter Mosley. A young woman descended from Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings driven from her neighborhood by a white militia. A university professor studying racism by conducting a secret social experiment on his own son. A single mother desperate to buy her first home even as the world hurtles toward catastrophe. Each fighting to survive in America. Tough-minded, vulnerable and brave, Johnson’s precisely imagined debut explores burdened inheritances and extraordinary pursuits of belonging. Left Bank Books.

7 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Jonathan Franzen with Kathy Wang, Crossroads (Author Talk)
JONATHAN FRANZEN will be in conversation with the author of Family Trust and Impostor Syndrome, Kathy Wang. It’s December 23, 1971, and heavy weather is forecast for Chicago. Russ Hildebrandt, the associate pastor of a liberal suburban church, is on the brink of breaking free of a marriage he finds joyless — unless his wife, Marion, who has her own secret life, beats him to it. Their eldest child, Clem, is coming home from college on fire with moral absolutism, having taken an action that will shatter his father. Clem’s sister, Becky, long the social queen of her high-school class, has sharply veered into the counterculture, while their brilliant younger brother, Perry, who’s been selling drugs to seventh graders, has resolved to be a better person. Each of the Hildebrandts seeks a freedom that each of the others threatens to complicate. Franzen ventures back into the past and explores the history of two generations. With characteristic humor and complexity, and with even greater warmth, he conjures a world that resonates powerfully with our own. Book purchase required. Left Bank Books.

8 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Anthony Doerr, Cloud Cuckoo Land (Author Talk)
From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of All the Light We Cannot See comes the highly anticipated Cloud Cuckoo Land. Set in Constantinople in the 15th century, in a small town in present-day Idaho, and on an interstellar ship decades from now, Anthony Doerr’s gorgeous third novel is a triumph of imagination and compassion, a soaring story about children on the cusp of adulthood in worlds in peril, who find resilience, hope and a book. Thirteen-year-old Anna, an orphan, lives inside the formidable walls of Constantinople in a house of women who make their living embroidering the robes of priests. Restless and insatiably curious, Anna learns to read, and in this ancient city, famous for its libraries, she finds a book, the story of Aethon, who longs to be turned into a bird so that he can fly to a utopian paradise in the sky. This, she reads to her ailing sister as the walls of the only place she has known are bombarded in the great siege of Constantinople. Outside the walls is Omeir, a village boy, miles from home, conscripted with his beloved oxen into the invading army. His path and Anna’s will cross. Five hundred years later, in a library in Idaho, octogenarian Zeno, who learned Greek as a prisoner of war, rehearses five children in a play adaptation of Aethon’s story, preserved against all odds through centuries. Tucked among the library shelves is a bomb, planted by a troubled, idealistic teenager, Seymour. This is another siege. And in a not-so-distant future, on the interstellar ship Argos, Konstance is alone in a vault, copying on scraps of sacking the story of Aethon, told to her by her father. She has never set foot on our planet. RSVP and book purchase required; $35 for in-person event, includes copy of the book. Left Bank Books.
IN-PERSON: Grandel Theatre in Grand Arts Center, 3610 Grandel Square, St. Louis, 63103

8 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Andrea Elliott, Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival, and Hope in an American City (Author Talk)
ANDREA ELLIOTT will be in conversation with Chris Krehmeyer, president and CEO of Beyond Housing. Drawing on nearly a decade of reporting, Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative journalist Elliott tells the unforgettable story of Dasani Coates, a homeless girl whose indomitable spirit is tested by poverty and racism in an unequal America, in Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival, and Hope in an American City. Elliott weaves the story of Dasani’s childhood with the history of her family, tracing the passage of their ancestors from slavery to the Great Migration north. As Dasani comes of age, she must guide her siblings through a city riddled by hunger, violence, drug addiction, homelessness and the monitoring of child protection services. Westfall Politics & History Series, sponsored by St. Louis County Library, HEC Media, and Left Bank Books.

9 OCTOBER  |  1 PM; 16 OCTOBER  |  1 PM; 23 OCTOBER  |  1 PM; 30 OCTOBER  |  1 PM
Soldiers Memorial Outdoor Tours
Explore the architecture and history of the Soldiers Memorial Military Museum and the Court of Honor while learning of their role in the beautification of downtown St. Louis. This is an opportunity to better understand the symbolism and nuances of Soldiers Memorial’s massive Walker Hancock sculptures, spectacular Gold Star Mothers mosaic, calming effects of its reflecting pool and fountain, and many other architectural tributes to those who served our country. Meet your guide outside near the main entrance to the building for the 1-hour tour. $5. Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON - RSVP: Soldiers Memorial, Court of Honor, 1315 Chestnut St, St. Louis, 63103

11 OCTOBER  |  7:30 PM
Harold and Maude Discussion
With the idiosyncratic American fable “Harold and Maude” (1971), countercultural director Hal Ashby fashioned what would become the cult classic of its era. Working from a script by Colin Higgins, Ashby tells the story of the emotional and romantic bond between a death-obsessed young man (Bud Cort) from a wealthy family and a devil-may-care, bohemian octogenarian (Ruth Gordon). Equal parts gallows humor and romantic innocence, Harold and Maude dissolves the line between darkness and light along with the ones that separate people by class, gender, and age, and it features indelible performances and a remarkable soundtrack by Cat Stevens. Introduction and discussion by Kathy Corley, documentary filmmaker and professor emerita of film at Webster University. Find streaming options on JustWatch. Golden Anniversaries features classic films celebrating their 50th anniversaries. This fourth edition of the event will highlight films from 1971. Cinema St. Louis will hold free online conversations on the selected works, with people watching the films on their own but gathering virtually to discuss them. Cinema St. Louis and St. Louis Public Library.

12 OCTOBER  |  11 AM
A Tale of Two Territories: Missouri’s Road to Statehood and Puerto Rico’s Status in the U.S.
For more than 100 years Puerto Ricans on and off the U.S. mainland have discussed the issue of the island’s status. As Missouri celebrates 200 years of statehood and questions over Puerto Rico’s status once again loom over our nation’s capital, we’ll discuss what it means to be in territorial limbo from historical, political and cultural points of view. Join Omar Eaton-Martinez, the Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion senior fellow for the American Alliance of Museums and head of historical resources for Prince George’s County Parks & Recreation; Luimil Negrón-Pérez, a doctoral candidate and E. Desmond Lee scholar in urban education at University of Missouri–St. Louis; and Fernando Tormos-Aponte, assistant professor of public policy and political science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, a Kendall fellow at the Union of Concerned Scientists, and a visiting scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Department of Political Science. The panel will be moderated by Daniela Velázquez of the Puerto Rican Society Inc. of St. Louis. STL History Live, Missouri Historical Society.

13 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
Soldiers Chow & Chat with Michael Farar
U.S. AIR FORCE CAPT. MICHAEL FARAR, a chaplain at Scott Air Force Base, will give a brief history of the institution of the U.S. military chaplaincy, talk about what his work entails, and take audience questions. Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Soldiers Memorial, 5700 Lindell Blvd St. Louis, 63112

13 OCTOBER  |  6 PM
Artist Talk: Shara Hughes
SHARA HUGHES and Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis Chief Curator Wassan Al-Khudhairi will talk about the artist’s seven-year survey, On Edge. Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis.
IN PERSON – RSVP: Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, 3750 Washington Boulevard, St. Louis, 63108

13 OCTOBER  |  6 PM
Derecka Purnell with Brittany Packnett Cunningham & Kayla Reed, Becoming Abolitionists (Author Talk)
For more than a century, activists in the United States have tried to reform the police. From community policing initiatives to increasing diversity, none of it has stopped the police from killing about three people a day. Millions of people continue to protest police violence because these solutions do not match the problem: The police cannot be reformed. In Becoming Abolitionists, Purnell draws from her experiences as a lawyer, writer and organizer initially skeptical about police abolition. She saw too much sexual violence and buried too many friends to consider getting rid of police in her hometown of St. Louis, let alone the nation. But the police were a placebo. Calling them felt like something, and something feels like everything when the other option seems like nothing. Purnell details how multiracial social movements rooted in rebellion, risk-taking and revolutionary love pushed her and a generation of activists toward abolition. The book travels across geography and time, and offers lessons that activists have learned from Ferguson to South Africa, from Reconstruction to contemporary protests against police shootings. Here, Purnell argues that police cannot be reformed and invites readers to envision new systems that work to address the root causes of violence. Becoming Abolitionists shows that abolition is not solely about getting rid of police, but a commitment to create and support different answers to the problem of harm in society, and, most excitingly, an opportunity to reduce and eliminate harm in the first place. Left Bank Books.

13 OCTOBER  |  7:30 PM
Lori Rader-Day with Naomi Hirahara, Death at Greenway (Author Talk)
LORI RADER-DAY will be in conversation with Edgar Award winning author Naomi Hirahara. From the award-winning author of The Day I Died and The Lucky One comes a captivating suspense novel about nurses during World War II who come to Agatha Christie’s holiday estate to care for evacuated children. But when a body is discovered nearby, the idyllic setting becomes host to a deadly mystery. Bridey Kelly has come to Greenway House — the beloved holiday home of Agatha Christie — in disgrace. A terrible mistake at St. Prisca’s Hospital in London has led to her dismissal as a nurse trainee, and her only chance for redemption is a position in the countryside caring for children evacuated to safety from the Blitz. Greenway is a beautiful home full of riddles: wondrous curios not to be touched, restrictions on rooms not to be entered, and a generous library, filled with books about murder. The biggest mystery might be the other nurse, Gigi, who is like no one Bridey has ever met. Chasing 10 young children through the winding paths of the estate grounds might have soothed Bridey’s anxieties and grief — if Greenway were not situated so near the English Channel and the rising aggressions of the war. When a body washes ashore near the estate, Bridey is horrified to realize this is not a victim of war, but of a brutal killing. As the local villagers look among themselves, Bridey and Gigi discover they each harbor dangerous secrets about what has led them to Greenway. With a mystery writer’s home as their unsettling backdrop, the young women must unravel the truth before their safe haven becomes a place of death. Left Bank Books.

14 OCTOBER  |  9 AM
Sharon Smith, Route 66: Main Street through St. Louis 
SHARON SMITH, curator of Civic and Personal Identity, Missouri History Museum. Free, but advanced reservations are necessary.
IN-PERSON: National Museum of Transportation, Earl C. Lindburg Automobile Center, Mezzanine, 2933 Barrett Station Rd., St. Louis, 63122

14 OCTOBER  |  6:30 PM
LGBTQIA+ Communities and the Law
From masquerading laws to marriage equality to today’s fights for trans rights, the lives of people who identify as LGBTQIA+ have been at the center of legislation for generations. Join Curatorial Assistant Ian Darnell for some highlights of this legal history, followed by a moderated panel discussion about the issues that have played out in the courts in recent memory, ongoing legal battles, and how legislation has affected LGBTQIA+ lives. Arrive early and see local historian and founder of the St. Louis LGBT History Project, Steven Brawley, at our STL LGBTQIA trivia table. Listen to a concert by CHARIS, the St. Louis Women’s Chorus, and join a 15-minute tour discussing some influential St. Louisans who have worked to make our city more inclusive for the LGBTQIA+ community. Each Thursday Night at the Museum will be the most fun, engaging, uplifting, thought-provoking, perspective-shaping night of your week. Starting at 5:30pm, there will be happy hour and pop-up activities, such as brief tours, games and performances. The main stage comes to life at 6:30pm, light appetizers and drinks are available for purchase until 7 pm, and the Missouri History Museum’s exhibits are open until 8 pm for you to explore. Thursday Nights at the Museum and Gateway to Pride, the William A. Kerr Foundation, AARP St. Louis, and Missouri History Museum.
IN PERSON: Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, 63112

14 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Shannon Carpenter with Jonathan Heisey-Grove, Ultimate Stay-At-Home Dad (Author Talk)
Missouri author and stay-at-home dad Shannon Carpenter will be in conversation with the board president of the National At-Home Dad Network, Jonathan Heisey-Grove. A practical guide for modern-day parenting geared toward stay-at-home dads, offering advice on everything from learning to cook and clean with children, to dealing with mental health and relationships, with the easygoing perspective that dads can use their natural talents to parent any way that they choose. The Ultimate Stay-at-Home Dad manual takes the best advice and wisdom from a dads’ group, and puts it into a format to help new stay-at-home fathers. Characterized by actionable and direct advice to fathers, the book takes on parenting from a father’s point of view and encourages dads to use their natural talents to become a better parent. That advice is further bolstered by an additional 57 other dads who also give advice. All this advice is framed by the author’s personal stories, which help the reader connect with the content and drives the advice home. This is a book that takes on day-to-day parenting, not just as a stay-at-home dad — working fathers could benefit from this book as much as at-home dads. Left Bank Books.

14 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Jan Jacobi, Lincoln in Springfield (Author Talk)
“Did he strike you as a rising man?” This is the question that surrounds Abraham Lincoln, the freshly minted lawyer eager to take Springfield by storm. But how can he know if he is rising or falling when so much of his character is yet to be determined including whom he loves, what sort of politics he wants to engage in, and even what he believes about key issues plaguing the nation? Picking up at the end of his award-winning debut Young Lincoln, Jan Jacobi’s Lincoln in Springfield continues his young adult saga of Abraham Lincoln’s development, as the young man becomes a young professional and politician.
IN PERSON: Subterranean Books, 6271 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 63130

14 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
N. West Moss, Flesh & Blood: Reflections on Infertility, Family and Creating a Bountiful Life (Author Talk)
N. WEST MOSS will be in conversation with Shellie Fidell of Psychotherapy Specialists - Missouri Baptist Medical Center. Flesh & Blood follows Moss’ story through an emergency hysterectomy, complications and recovery as her thoughts turn to her previous struggles with infertility. We learn about the inspiring women in Moss’ family as she sorts out her feeling that this line will end with her. Ultimately, Moss discovers that there are other ways besides having children to have a legacy, and that grief is not a stopping place but a companion that travels along with us through everything, even happiness. St. Louis County Library, HEC Media, and Left Bank Books.

15 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Cassandra Quave with Amy Stewart, Plant Hunter (Author Talk)
A herbarium curator, associate professor, and a leader in the field of medical botany, Cassandra Quave will be in conversation with best-selling author of The Drunken Botanist, Amy Stewart. A leading medical ethnobotanist tells us the story of her quest to develop new ways to fight illness and disease through the healing powers of plants in this uplifting and adventure-filled memoir. Plants are the basis for an array of lifesaving and health-improving medicines we all now take for granted. In today’s world of synthetic pharmaceuticals, scientists and laypeople alike have lost this connection to the natural world. No one understands this better than Cassandra Quave, whose groundbreaking research as a leading medical ethnobotanist is helping to provide clues for the next generation of advanced medicines. In The Plant Hunter, Quave weaves together science, botany and memoir to tell us the extraordinary story of her own journey. Traveling by canoe, ATV, mule, airboat and on foot, she has conducted field research in the flooded forests of the remote Amazon, the murky swamps of southern Florida, the rolling hills of central Italy, isolated mountaintops in Albania and Kosovo, and volcanic isles arising out of the Mediterranean — all in search of natural compounds, long-known to traditional healers, that could help save us all from the looming crisis of untreatable superbugs. And as a person born with multiple congenital defects of her skeletal system, she’s done it all with just one leg. Filled with grit, tragedy, triumph, awe and scientific discovery, her story illuminates how the path forward for medical discovery may be found in nature’s oldest remedies. Left Bank Books.

16 OCTOBER  |  2 PM
Roshani Chokshi, The Bronzed Beasts (Author Talk)
Returning to the dark and glamorous 19th-century world of her New York Times instant best-seller, The Gilded Wolves, Roshani Chokshi dazzles us with the final riveting tale in the young adult historical fantasy series. Aristocratic treasurer hunter Séverin and his team of societal outcasts must make their way through the haunted waterways of Venice facing plague pits and deadly masquerades, unearthly songs and the shining steps of a temple whose powers might offer divinity itself ... but at a price they may not be willing to pay.

16 OCTOBER  |  6:30 PM
Steven Reigns, A Quilt for David (Author Talk)
In the early 1990s, eight people living in a small conservative Florida town alleged that David Acer, their dentist, infected them with HIV. David’s gayness, along with his sickly appearance from his own AIDS-related illness, made him the perfect scapegoat and victim of mob mentality. In these early years of the AIDS epidemic, when transmission was little understood, and homophobia rampant, people like David were villainized. Accuser Kimberly Bergalis landed a People magazine cover story, while others went on talk shows and made front page news. With a poet’s eulogistic and psychological intensity, Steven Reigns recovers the life and death of this man who also stands in for so many lives destroyed not only by HIV, but a diseased society that used stigma against the most vulnerable. It’s impossible not to make connections between this story and how the 21st-century pandemic has also been defined by medical misinformation and cultural bias. Inspired by years of investigative research into the lives of David and those who denounced him, Reigns has stitched together a hauntingly poetic narrative that retraces an American history, questioning the fervor of his accusers and recuperating a gay life previously shrouded in secrecy and shame. Left Bank Books.
IN PERSON: Northwest Coffee Roasting, 4251 Laclede Ave, St. Louis, 63108

18 OCTOBER  |  1:30 PM
The Night Stalker Screening & Discussion
An abrasive Las Vegas newspaper reporter investigates a series of murders committed by a vampire. Film critic Jim Batts will lead a post-screening discussion. Monday Matinee Classic Film Series.
IN-PERSON: St. Louis Public Library – Buder Library, 4401 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, 63109

18 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
David S. Reynolds, Abe: Abraham Lincoln in His Times (Author Talk)
DAVID S. REYNOLDS will be in conversation with renowned historian H.W. Brands. From one of the great historians of 19th-century America, Abe: Abraham Lincoln in His Times is a revelatory biography that brings Lincoln to life within his turbulent age. From New England Puritan stock on his father’s side and Virginia Cavalier gentry on his mother’s, Lincoln was linked by blood to the central conflict of the age. As a politician, he moved too slowly for some and too swiftly for many, but he always pushed toward justice while keeping the whole nation in mind. Abe culminates in the Civil War, the defining test of Lincoln and his beloved country. Reynolds shows us the extraordinary range of cultural knowledge Lincoln drew from as he shaped a vision of true union. St. Louis County Library, HEC Media, and Left Bank Book.

20 OCTOBER  |  10:30 AM
Behind the Curtain of the Fabulous Fox Theatre
When you hear “the Fabulous Fox Theatre,” you think about the great stage plays you’ve experienced and the beautiful architecture. But have you ever stopped to think about how it became fabulous? Join Curator Sharon Smith and Fox Theatre’s Thomas Johnson for a conversation about the road to becoming the Fabulous Fox Theatre. The Missouri Historical Society is honored to present the 2021 Thomas Jefferson Society Award to Mary B. Strauss, who has dedicated her life to promoting and supporting the arts and historical preservation in St. Louis. This program is part of a multiday celebration of intergenerational learning and continuing education and was inspired by Strauss’ work within the community. Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Missouri History Museum, Lee Auditorium, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, 63112

20 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Cynthia Branigan, The Last Diving Horse in America: Rescuing Gamal and Other Animals — Lessons in Living and Loving (Author Talk)
Beginning in 1929, four times a day, seven days a week, a trained horse sailed 40 feet through the air, plunging into a 10-foot-deep tank of water. Decades later, the act was shuttered, and Gamal, the last Atlantic City diving horse, was placed on the auction block. Haunted by the act she’d seen as a child, Cynthia Branigan made the impulsive decision to outbid the slaughterhouses. Branigan shares the magical story of how she and Gamal came to rescue each other — and how caring for Gamal led her to saving other animals and a surprising, but purposeful, life. St. Louis County Library, HEC Media, and Left Bank Books.

21 OCTOBER  |  4 PM
Anthony Horowitz with Jeff Kinney, A Line to Kill (Author Talk)
Best-selling author Anthony Horowitz will be in conversation with author and independent bookstore owner, Jeff Kinney. When ex-Detective Inspector Daniel Hawthorne and his sidekick, author Anthony Horowitz, are invited to an exclusive literary festival on Alderney, an idyllic island off the south coast of England, they don’t expect to find themselves in the middle of murder investigation — or to be trapped with a cold-blooded killer in a remote place with a murky, haunted past. Arriving on Alderney, Hawthorne and Horowitz soon meet the festival’s other guests — an eccentric gathering that includes a best-selling children's author, a French poet, a TV-chef-turned-cookbook-author, a blind psychic and a war historian — along with a group of ornery locals embroiled in an escalating feud over a disruptive power line. When a local grandee is found dead under mysterious circumstances, Hawthorne and Horowitz become embroiled in the case. The island is locked down, no one is allowed on or off, and it soon becomes horribly clear that a murderer lurks in their midst. But who? Book purchase required. Left Bank Books and HarperCollins.

21 OCTOBER  |  6:30 PM
Missouri Bicentennial: Madame Mayor
More women than ever are being elected to positions of leadership in local government. This event invites a panel of women who have served or are currently serving as St. Louis–area mayors. You’ll learn about their experiences running for office, the challenges they’ve faced and their visions for the future of our region. Arrive early to enjoy mini gallery tours with Beyond the Ballot’s content lead, Katie Moon; a musical performance by singer Evann De-Bose; a historian’s corner featuring Community Tours Manager Amanda Clark; the chance to design your own campaign button; and informational and activity tables hosted by the Women’s Foundation of Greater St. Louis, Rung for Women, and the League of Women Voters. Join us starting at 5:30 pm for happy hour and pop-up activities. The main stage comes to life at 6:30 pm, light appetizers and drinks are available for purchase until 7 pm, and the Missouri History Museum’s exhibits are open until 8 pm for you to explore. Thursday Night at the Museum, Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, 63112

23 OCTOBER  |  9 AM
Groundbreakers, Rule-Breakers & Rebels
Join tour leader and Missouri Historical Society Exhibits Manager Katie Moon as we explore the legacy of St. Louis women involved in groundbreaking work. By overcoming significant obstacles and limited opportunities in awe-inspiring ways, these women made their mark on the city and beyond — as architects, doctors, union organizers, social activists and the country’s first NASA nurse. Discovery Tours, Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, 63112

25 OCTOBER  |  1:30 PM
House on Haunted Hill Screening & Discussion
A millionaire offers $10,000 to five people who agree to be locked in a large, spooky, rented house overnight with him and his wife. Film critic Joshua Ray from Cinema St. Louis’ The Lens will lead a post-screening discussion. Monday Matinee Classic Film Series.
IN-PERSON: St. Louis Public Library – Buder Library, 4401 Hampton Ave., St. Louis, 63109

25 OCTOBER  |  6 PM
Rebecca Solnit with adrienne maree brown, Orwell’s Roses (Author Talk)
REBECCA SOLNIT will be in conversation with best-selling author of Pleasure Activism and Emergent Strategy, adrienne maree brown. A lush exploration of roses, pleasure and politics, and a fresh take on George Orwell as an avid gardener whose political writing was grounded in his passion for the natural world. “In the year 1936 a writer planted roses,” so begins Rebecca Solnit’s new book, a reflection on George Orwell’s passionate gardening and the way that his involvement with plants, particularly flowers, and the natural world illuminates his other commitments as a writer and antifascist, and the intertwined politics of nature and power. Sparked by her unexpected encounter with the surviving roses he planted in 1936, Solnit’s account of this understudied aspect of Orwell’s life explores his writing and his actions — from going deep into the coal mines of England, fighting in the Spanish Civil War, critiquing Stalin when much of the international left still supported him (and then critiquing that left), to his analysis of the relationship between lies and authoritarianism. Through Solnit’s celebrated ability to draw unexpected connections, readers encounter the photographer Tina Modotti’s roses and her Stalinism, Stalin’s obsession with forcing lemons to grow in impossibly cold conditions, Orwell’s slave-owning ancestors in Jamaica, Jamaica Kincaid’s critique of colonialism and imperialism in the flower garden, and the brutal rose industry in Colombia that supplies the American market. The book draws to a close with a rereading of Nineteen Eighty-Four that completes her portrait of a more hopeful Orwell, as well as a reflection on pleasure, beauty and joy as acts of resistance. Book purchase required. Left Bank Books.

26 OCTOBER  |  11 AM
Impressions of MO: The Roaring 1830s and 1840s
Land for sale in Missouri and beyond attracted a flood of new arrivals to St. Louis; from 1835 to 1845, St. Louis’ population doubled every five years. Some people intended to settle in St. Louis, and others simply stopped to replenish their supplies before heading farther west. An incredibly diverse group of writers — including Germans, Irish and Black Americans — described their impressions of the state in letters, diaries and memoirs. Join MHS Librarian Emily Jaycox and Associate Archivist Jaime Bourassa for this fascinating look at Missouri during a period of explosive growth following its first decades of statehood. Missouri Bicentennial, Missouri Historical Society.
IN PERSON: Missouri History Museum, Lee Auditorium, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis, 63112

27 OCTOBER  |  11:30 AM
Beyond the Gates at Bellefontaine: The Civil War
Many important generals, officers and civilians of the Civil War era (from April 1861 to April 1865) are laid to rest at Bellefontaine Cemetery. The war began when a Confederate cannon fired on Fort Sumter. The next major event took place on April 20, 1861, when secessionist forces seized the federal arsenal in Liberty, Missouri. Then on May 10, 1861, armed and organized infantrymen confronted one another for the first time in St. Louis — near what is now Grand and Olive — in what’s locally known as the Camp Jackson Affair. Friends and foes now lie side by side at this landmark cemetery. STL History Live, Missouri Historical Society.

27 OCTOBER  |  12 PM
Nina Mukerjee Furstenau with Ann Lemons Pollack, Green Chili and Other Imposters (Author Talk)
A Missouri author and M.F.K. Fisher Grand Prize for Excellence in Culinary Writing award-winning author, Nina Mukerjee Furstenau will discuss her exploration of food history, Green Chili and Other Imposters. She will be in conversation with beloved St. Louis food writer Ann Lemons Pollack. Follow a food trail and you’ll find yourself crisscrossing oceans. Furstenau picks through lost tastes with recipes as codes to everything from political resistance to comfort food and much more. Pinpoint the entry of the Portuguese in India by following green chili trails; find the origins of limes; trace tomatoes and potatoes in India to the Malabar Coast; consider what makes a food, or even a person, foreign and marvel how and when they cease to be. Food history is a world heritage story that has all the drama of a tense thriller or maybe a mystery. Whose food is it? Who gets to tell its tale? Respect for food history might tame the accusations of appropriation, but what is at stake as food traditions and biodiversity ebb away is the great, and not always good, story of us. Left Bank Books.

28 OCTOBER  |  6:45 PM
The History of Halloween: 28 Centuries and Counting
Is Halloween a religious holiday? Why does it happen in October? When did Americans start celebrating Halloween and why? Why do Americans carve Jack-o’-lanterns? What was the first candy associated with Halloween? Why is a black cat a witch’s best friend? Why do ghosts have raggedy hems? Do all witches wear pointy hats? When did zombies start to decay? If questions like are things you have always wanted to know then you don't want to miss this event with Kellee Bohannon as she reveals myths, facts, and legends behind America’s scariest holiday. Bohannon will explain how Halloween assumed its current form and grapple with some of the most basic, but vexing, questions concerning Halloween customs and characters.
IN-PERSON: St. Louis Public Library – Central Library, 1301 Olive St., St. Louis, 63103

29 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Adam Schiff, Midnight in Washington (Author Talk)
U.S. REP. ADAM SCHIFF in conversation with Jason Kander, former Missouri Secretary of State and President of Veterans Community Program. Schiff presents the vital inside account of American democracy in its darkest hour. In the years leading up to the 2016 election, Schiff had already been sounding the alarm over the resurgence of autocracy around the world, and the threat this posed to the United States. In Midnight in Washington, Schiff argues that recent divisive politics have so weakened our institutions that the peril will last for years, requiring unprecedented vigilance against the growing and dangerous appeal of authoritarianism. Deepening our understanding of prominent public moments, including Schiff’s account of January 6, 2021, Midnight in Washington reveals the private struggles, the internal conflicts and the triumphs of courage that came with defending the republic. $32–$35, includes book copy. Tickets (on sale October 4) can be purchased through Eventbrite. St. Louis County Library.
IN-PERSON: St. Louis County Library – Headquarters, 1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, 63131

29 OCTOBER  |  7 PM
Teresa K. Miller & Devon Walker-Figueroa, Borderline Fortune & Philomath (Author Talk)
Left Bank Books welcomes two 2020 National Poetry Series winners, Teresa K. Miller and Devon Walker-Figueroa, who will read from and discuss their collections Borderline Fortune (Miller) and Philomath (Walker-Figueroa). Borderline Fortune is a meditation on intangible family inheritance — of unresolved intergenerational conflicts and traumas in particular — set against the backdrop of our planetary inheritance as humans. As species go extinct and glaciers melt, Teresa K. Miller asks what we owe one another and what it means to echo one’s ancestors’ grief and fear. Drawing on her family history, from her great-grandfather’s experience as a schoolteacher on an island in the Bering Strait to her father’s untimely death, as well as her pursuit of regenerative horticulture, Miller seeks through these beautifully crafted poems to awaken from the intergenerational trance and bear witness to our current moment with clarity and attention. With Devon Walker-Figueroa as our Virgil, we begin in her collection’s eponymous town of Philomath, Oregon. We drift through the general store, into the Nazarene Church, past people plucking at the brambles of a place that won’t let them go. We move beyond the town into fields and farmland — and further still, along highways, into a cursed Californian town, a museum in Florence. We wander with a kind of animal logic, like a beast with “a mind to get loose / from a valley fallowing / towards foul,” through the tense, overlapping space between movement and stillness. Left Bank Books.