Panel Discussions 2013

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Why Sedna Matters to Women Writers ~ March 2, 2013

Saturday, March 2
Why Sedna Matters to Women Writers
Led by Mary Kate Jordan
Mason Library, Great Barrington, 10 a.m.–noon

Sedna, an ancient Inuit archetype, gave her name to a planetary body discovered in 2003. Sedna’s story matters to women who honor—or would like to honor—the rich possibilities of their own life stories. Women who like to get beneath the surface of things with words will find Sedna’s assistance invaluable. In this morning of storytelling followed by a Q&A, we’ll explore aspects of Sedna’s silent presence among us. We’ll discover that myth accompanies meaning at the deepest levels and experience why the deepest levels of meaning are called mythic. We’ll invite ourselves and our writing into the shamanic depths where ancient mystery and contemporary science merge into story.

Mary Kate Jordan is the author of The Bridge Called Grief, a book-length photo essay on loss, grief, and the hope of renewal. She lives in Monterey, MA, and takes photos both at home and away.  thejordancenter.com

 

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Berkshire Magazine presents: Women Writers and the Role of the Editor ~ March 3, 2013

Sunday, March 3
Berkshire Magazine presents:
Women Writers and the Role of the Editor
Hosted by Anastasia Stanmeyer, editor of Berkshire Magazine, with Robin Catalano, Nichole Dupont, Ellen G. Lahr, Gladys Montgomery, and Abby Wood
The Triplex, Great Barrington, 11 a.m.

Join Berkshire Magazine writers and editor Anastasia Stanmeyer for a panel discussion on the challenges of being a woman journalist today. Many Berkshire writers are women who must juggle second, and even third, jobs while taking care of households. The challenges are even greater for them as they try to keep a writing career going. We will also explore the many facets of the role of the editor and its importance to the development of new and established writers.   www.berkshiremag.com


Anastasia Stanmeyer
is the editor of Berkshire Magazine. She is an active member of the Berkshire community and lives with her three children and husband on a farm in South County. She spent twelve years in Asia, writing and editing for Time, Asiaweek, Newsweek, Stern, and other magazines. She has written extensively for dailies such as the Dallas Morning News, the Christian Science Monitor, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Robin Catalano has been a freelance writer and editor for fifteen years, with articles appearing in Gourmet, Culinary Trends, Berkshire Magazine, Berkshire Living, and Dance Spirit. She has edited more than three hundred titles for publishing companies such as Penguin Putnam/New American Library and Simon & Schuster. She is content editor and copywriter for the Annie Selke Companies and oversees the company’s social media strategy and content.

Nichole Dupont

Berkshire native Nichole Dupont is a freelance writer and editor living in Sheffield, MA. Her work has appeared in Berkshire Magazine, Newsday, Rural Intelligence, and the Advocate Weekly. When her time permits, you will find her at risqué venues, reading her poetry and fiction among sequined burlesque dancers and jazz performers, or fishing for stripers and blues in the Atlantic.   www.ruralintelligence.com

Ellen G. Lahr is a writer, editor, and journalist. She spent more than twenty-five years at the Berkshire Eagle and has freelanced for Berkshire Magazine, the Boston Globe, the New York Times, Field and Stream, the Women’s Times, Berkshires Week, and other publications. She entered the PR world in 2008. She established EGLahr Communications in 2012, serving clients in the Berkshires and Albany region.

Gladys Montgomery, an award-winning writer and editor, contributes regularly to Berkshire Magazine. She has penned hundreds of feature articles on architecture, design, and other topics for regional, national, and international magazines. She was founding editor of Berkshire Living Home + Garden, and authored five books about architecture and antiques. She is a full-time real estate agent based in Stockbridge, MA.

Abby Wood is a freelance writer and social media specialist living in Pittsfield, MA. In addition to Berkshire Magazine, her work has appeared in the North Adams Transcript, the Berkshire Eagle, and Berkshire Living. A North Adams native and Williams College alumna, she enjoys venturing into South County for writing projects. She is also social media specialist at the Annie Selke Companies.

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Cows Save the Planet: How to Find and Tell Stories of Ecological and Economic Restoration ~ March 3, 2013

Sunday, March 3
The New Economics Institute presents:
Cows Save the Planet: How to Find and Tell Stories of Ecological and Economic Restoration
Reading and discussion with Judith D. Schwartz , Billie Best, and Phyllis Webb
American Institute of Economic Research, Great Barrington, 3–5 p.m.

The way we see the world and its challenges is often framed by the stories we hear and tell ourselves. This panel will focus on stories for the new economy and new solutions to problems in which we feel stuck, including the stories Judith D. Schwartz found that led to her upcoming book, Cows Save the Planet. We will highlight both global and Berkshire-based narratives of resilience and renewal. We will explore how narratives can be honed and shared so as to harness optimism and create momentum for change.

Judith D. Schwartz, a freelance writer based in Bennington, VT, has written about environmental economics for Pacific Standard, Time, and the Christian Science Monitor. She is the author of Cows Save the Planet: And Other Improbable Ways of Restoring Soil to Heal the Earth, due out from Chelsea Green Publishing in May.

Billie Best is a writer, farmer, and community activist. She spent many years in the corporate world as a marketing consultant. Recently, she became executive director of Project Native, a nonprofit farm in the Berkshires.


Phyllis Webb
and her husband own and run the Magic Fluke Co., a ukulele manufacturing company in Sheffield.  She has held numerous leadership positions in community organizations and has been an advocate for strong local economies for more than twenty years. She currently serves on the boards of BerkShares and Music in Common.

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Cuatro mujeres, cuatro géneros/Four Women, Four Genres ~ March 5, 2013

Cuatro mujeres, cuatro géneros/Four Women, Four Genres
Multimedia presentation and discussion hosted by Holly Brown
Liebowitz International Center, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 7–9 p.m.

To browse through most contemporary anthologies of Latin American literature is to come away with the misconception that Latin American women have no voice in the Spanish-speaking literary or artistic world. In support of these underrepresented female artists, this workshop will showcase four examples of different creative genres by women from Mexico, Argentina, Bolivia, and Brazil. The bilingual presentation will be led by Holly Brown, professor of Spanish language and literature at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, with student presenters Olivia Dhaliwal, Paola Garcia, Melissa Sherman-Bennett, Abby Smith, and Mayu Suzuki. There will be a round-table discussion plus an opportunity for participants to engage in an unstructured creative writing activity at the close of the presentation.

Brief biographies of artists to be showcased:

Poetry:

Gabriela Mistral

Gabriela Mistral (b. 1889) was a Chilean educator, poet, and feminist. She was also the first Latin American to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, in 1945.

Painting:

self-portrait by Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo (b. 1907) was a Mexican painter well known for her distinctive self-portraits. She was an autodidact.

Short Story:

María Teresa Solari Ormachea (c. 1910) was a Bolivian born Professor, poet and political activist. She was also Director of Eco femenino magazine.

Essay:

Clarice Lispector

Clarice Lispector (b. 1920) was a Ukranian born, Brazilian novelist and journalist.

 

Brief biographies of event participants:

Olivia Dhaliwal is a student in her first year of Bard College at Simon’s Rock. She doesn’t know what her major will be yet, but she looks forward to seeing the world and helping people in her future with whatever career enables her to do so.

Paola Garcia

Paola Garcia is a student in her second year at Bard College at Simon’s Rock. She majors in Digital Media and Cultural Studies and looks forward to doing a lot of different film related work documenting various cultures and countries.

Melissa Sherman-Bennett is a first year student at Bard College at Simon’s Rock hailing from Taos, New Mexico. She is planning on majoring in mathematics and physics, unless the world of literature lures her away from her beloved variables. Graduation is much too far away for her to imagine what she might be doing after college, but it will probably be exciting.

Abigail Smith is in her first year at Simon’s Rock and plan on majoring in Biology. After Simon’s Rock I’ll probably study pediatric medicine. Gracias.

Mayu Suzuki is a sophomore in Simon’s Rock. She majors in literature and creative writing, and upon completing her degree she plans on going to graduate school.

Holly Brown teaches Spanish language and literature this year at Simon’s Rock as a faculty fellow hailing from Bard High School Early College in Queens and is pursuing her PhD. in Medieval Spanish Literature.

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Do You Want to Be a Published Author? ~ March 8, 2013

Friday, March 8
Do You Want to Be a Published Author?
Interactive Discussion hosted by Carole Owens, with Julia Lord, Roberta Silman, and Edith Velmans
Stockbridge Library, 4–6 p.m.

Why do you want to write? Is it for fame and fortune? You may be disappointed: the vast majority of writers are neither famous nor rich. Do you want to write for the love of it? To find truth? To persuade? To entertain? For whom do you want to write—how do you visualize your audience? Finding the answers to these and other questions will help shape and motivate your craft. Authors will discuss the writer’s experience, what motivated them to write, and the rewards and the drawbacks. A literary agent will discuss why knowing the answers to these questions will help you write works more likely to be published. A discussion will follow with audience members about their aspirations, motivations, and questions.

Carole Owens is the author of The Berkshire Cottages and seven other published books. She has written features for numerous magazines and writes a biweekly column in the Berkshire Eagle and the Berkshire Record. In 2006, she was named Scholar in Residence at the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities; and between 2006 and 2008 she mounted three exhibitions on Berkshire history: Pittsfield During the Gilded Age, Fertile Ground: Berkshire Artists and Writers, and Rockwell’s Vision of Melville’s World. Carole has been a consultant to or featured on A&E’s America’s Castles and City Confidential, PBS’s Chronicles, and other programs.

Julia Lord runs a small, tenacious literary agency working with high-quality writers in adult fiction and nonfiction. Julia began her career in 1985, working for actors at the Monty Silver Agency. She opened its literary department, representing writers for film, television, and theater. She moved to books and opened Julia Lord Literary Management in 1999. Her mission is very hands-on: to work with writers to develop their careers from idea through publication and marketing. Her office is known for her steadfast commitment to each and every author and book project.

Roberta Silman, a Guggenheim and NEA Fellow, has published Blood Relations, Boundaries, The Dream Dredger, Beginning The World Again, and Somebody’s Else’s Child. The winner of the Child Study Association Award, two National Magazine Awards, Honorable Mention for the PEN Hemingway and Janet Kafka Prizes, and two Pen Syndicated Fiction Prizes, she has had stories in the New Yorker, the Atlantic, and many other magazines, as well as on National Public Radio. She is also a regular reviewer for the Boston Globe and the online ArtsFuse.

Edith Velmans is the author of Edith’s Story, a biography that tells the story of her family, Jews living in Holland during WWII. A trained psychologist, she had a full career before turning to writing in 1997. Edith’s Story has been translated into ten languages and distributed worldwide. The book and its author have received prizes and honors in England, the Netherlands, and the United States.

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The 12th Annual International Women’s Day Observance: “Sweet Dreams of Women’s Human Rights” ~ March 10, 2013

Sunday, March 10
The Berkshire Human Rights Speaker Series presents:
The 12th Annual International Women’s Day Observance at Bard College at Simon’s Rock: “Sweet Dreams of Women’s Human Rights”
Film screening and discussion with Rob Fruchtman and Jennifer Dundas
McConnell Theater, Daniel Arts Center, 2–5 p.m.

The new documentary film Sweet Dreams, by Rob Fruchtman and Lisa Fruchtman, takes us to Rwanda, where, a decade after the 1994 genocide, women’s arts organizer Kiki Katese formed the first female drumming group in Rwanda. In the troupe, Tutsi and Hutu widows and orphans—wives and children of both perpetrators and victims—found reconciliation and safety through creating new traditions of hope and renewal. When Kiki later met Jennifer Dundas, one of the owners of Blue Marble Ice Cream in Brooklyn, she asked whether Jennifer would come to Rwanda to help the drummers open the first ice-cream shop in Rwanda. Sweet Dreams follows the women of the drumming group as they work with the American women to develop unique paths toward peace and possibility. A larger cooperative unfolds as the joyful film weaves the audience into the moving and inspiring beat of the drummers, artists, and entrepreneurs. sweetdreamsrwanda.com

Rob Fruchtman is an award-winning director, producer, and editor of documentaries and television programs in the arts, history, world cultures, and social justice issues. He was recipient of the Documentary Directors’ award at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival for his feature film Sister Helen, which aired on HBO, and he has won three Emmys for his work on PBS. In 2007 he produced the film Seeing Proof, commissioned by the George Soros Open Society Institute, a documentary exploring the brutal Khmer Rouge regime and its lingering effects on Cambodia’s society. glasshalffull.net

Jennifer Dundas has had a long and distinguished career as a film and theater actress. She starred in the Broadway premiere of Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia opposite Billy Crudup, and created the role of Edie in the world premiere of Jules Feiffer’s Grown Ups on Broadway. She now receives rave reviews for her Blue Marble Ice Cream products as well as her entrepreneurial partnerships with women in Rwanda.  www.bluemarbleicecream.com

Sweet Dreams :: Trailer from Liro Films on Vimeo.

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WAM Theatre and Sisters for Peace present: Screening: Half The Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide ~ March 15, 2013

Friday, March 15
WAM Theatre and Sisters for Peace present:
Screening: Half The Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
Community discussion to follow with Kristen van Ginhoven and Caroline Wheeler
The Panel will include Janis Broderick, Maia Conty, Shirley Edgarton, Jeanet Ingalls, Bryan Nurnberger, and Ananda Timpany. Special music performance by Lizzie West.
Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, 7–9:30 p.m.
Sponsored by McTeigue & McClellend and Sisters for Peace

This powerful documentary, inspired by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s best-selling book, introduces women and girls from all over the world who are living under some of the most difficult circumstances imaginable . . . and fighting bravely to change them. The film reflects viable and sustainable options for empowerment and offers a blueprint for transformation. Through these stories, Kristof and WuDunn help us see that the key to economic progress lies in unleashing women’s potential. They make clear how so many people have helped to do just that, and how we can each do our part. Change is possible, and we can be part of the solution.

The film will be followed by a community discussion exploring effective actions and agents of change for women and girls in our own community and beyond.  The panel will be moderated by Kristen van Ginhoven of WAM Theatre and will include Janis Broderick of Elizabeth Freeman Center and The Berkshire County Commission on the Status of Women, Maia Conty from AIER’s Women’s Financial Empowerment Series, Shirley Edgarton from Rite of Passage for Girls program and the Women of Color Giving Circle, Jeanet Ingalls from Shout Out Loud Productions, Bryan Nurnberger from Simply Smiles and Ananda Timpany from Railroad Street Youth Project.

There will also be a special performance during the evening, featuring Lizzie West, local singer songwriter. Lizzie has toured at length and has had her music in films, TV, and on the radio. Entertainment Weekly called her a “visionary troubadour.” She performs with her husband Baba Buffalo, a seasoned player of a most magical music sound.  lizzieandbaba.com

Inspired by the book Half the Sky, WAM Theatre was founded in 2009 by Kristen van Ginhoven and Leigh Strimbeck. WAM’s philanthropic mission is twofold: first, producing theatrical events for everyone, with a focus on women theater artists and/or stories of women and girls; second, to donate a portion of the proceeds from those events to organizations that benefit women and girls. WAM has donated over $7,000 to its beneficiaries.  www.kristenvanginhoven.com     wamtheatre.com

 

Like many who have read Half the Sky, Sisters for Peace founder Caroline Wheeler was compelled to engage others to get involved and to work together to help empower women and girls around the world. In just over a year, Sisters for Peace has rallied to do volunteer work and has given over $8,000 to local and global organizations. Sisters for Peace is an entirely volunteer organization, and every dollar donated goes directly to the NGOs that work to empower women and girls. It doesn’t take an extensive network of partners and investors to start making a difference.   www.sistersforpeace.org

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Writing Together: Moving out of the Garret ~ March 16, 2013

Saturday, March 16
Writing Together: Moving out of the Garret
Panel discussion with Patricia Lee Lewis, Ellen Meeropol, and Jacqueline Sheehan
Lenox Library, 1–3 p.m.

Three authors and writing teachers discuss ways writers can move out of the solitary garret for their mutual benefit: manuscript groups and writing partners; low-residence MFA’s and conferences; writing residencies and retreats; and online discussion boards and regional literary communities.

Patricia Lee Lewis was born and raised in Texas, where her three children were also born. For over thirty years she has lived and worked at Patchwork Farm Retreat in western Massachusetts. She holds an MFA degree in creative writing from Vermont College and a BA from Smith College, Phi Beta Kappa. Beloved mentor of many writers and leader of frequent writing retreats, both nationally and internationally, she has also been the publisher of The Patchwork Journal. A grant in 2011 from the Massachusetts Arts Council enabled her to help establish a writing program at her local library. Her first book of poems, A Kind of Yellow, was awarded first place by Writers Digest International.   Patchwork Farm Retreat

Ellen Meeropol, photo by Miriam Berkley

Ellen Meeropol’s writing explores characters at the intersection of political turmoil, ethical dilemma, and family life. Publishers Weekly gave her debut novel, House Arrest (Red Hen, 2011) a starred review, calling it “thoughtful and tightly composed, unflinching in taking on challenging subjects and deliberating uneasy ethical conundrums.” Her dramatic program about the Rosenberg Fund for Children has been produced in four cities and is planned for June 2013 in Manhattan. Her short stories and essays appear in Bridges, Pedestal, Rumpus, Portland Magazine, Shaking Magazine, the Women’s Times, and the Writers Chronicle. She teaches workshops at Grub Street in Boston and Writers in Progress in Florence, MA.   www.ellenmeeropol.com

Jacqueline Sheehan, PhD, is a psychologist and a New York Times best-selling author of fiction. Her novels include The Comet’s Tale, a novel about Sojourner Truth; Lost & Found, Now & Then, and Picture This. In 2005, she edited the anthology Women Writing in Prison. Jacqueline has been awarded residencies at Hawthornden Castle in Scotland and Jentel Arts Colony in Wyoming. She teaches workshops at Grub Street in Boston and Writers in Progress in Florence, MA. She has offered international writing retreats in Jamaica, Guatemala, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland.   www.jacquelinesheehan.com

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R2W Talks: Interviews with Powerful Women ~ March 16, 2013

Saturday, March 16
R2W Talks: Interviews with Powerful Women
Hosted by Serene Mastrianni with special guests Sheila Keator, Joanna L. Krotz, Diane Patrick and Evelyn Resh
Kellogg Music Center, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 1–3 p.m.
Admission $25, to benefit WBCR-LP, 97.7 FM, Berkshire Community Radio (free for students)
Tickets MUST be purchased in advance at radio2women.brownpapertickets.com

Join award-winning radio host Serene Mastrianni for a series of intense interviews with women experts, including Sheila Keator on Women in Finance, Joanna L. Krotz on Women in Philanthropy, Diane Patrick on Women and Empowerment, and Evelyn Resh on Women in Touch. The interviews will be followed by a Q&A session.

Serene Mastrianni is cohost and cofounder of Radio2Women, a radio show focusing on women’s issues, broadcast twice weekly from the studios of WBCR-LP, 97.7 FM, Great Barrington, and podcasts widely on the web. The mission of Radio2Women is to entertain, inform, and empower. In 2012, the show celebrated its sixth year on the air, with more than ten thousand podcasts downloaded.   www.radio2women.com

As the founder of Keator Group, LLC, and with more than thirty years of experience in the investment industry, Sheila Keator devotes her time to helping clients define and achieve business and investment objectives. She sits on the Advisory Committee for the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts MBA program and serves on the board of directors of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Newman Centerwww.thekeatorgroup.wfadv.com

Joanna L. Krotz is the author of Making Philanthropy Count: How Women Are Changing the World; The Guide to Intelligent Giving: Make A Difference in the World-and in Your Own Life; and coauthor of The Microsoft Small Business Kit, a 500-page guide to entrepreneurship. Joanna also runs Muse2Muse Productions, a custom content provider.  www.joannakrotz.com

First Lady of Massachusetts Diane Patrick has her own record of excellence and distinguished professional and public service. A lawyer, teacher, mother, and active member of her community, Mrs. Patrick has served on the boards of the United Way of Massachusetts Bay, Jane Doe, Inc., and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, among others. Currently, she serves on the board of the Posse Foundation and as an overseer at the Epiphany School. Mrs. Patrick has also been an outspoken advocate in the Commonwealth’s ongoing effort to end domestic violence. She has been actively engaged with families, agencies, and law enforcement to support victims as well as to identify and to address the root causes of domestic abuse.  First Lady Diane Patrick, Governor’s website

Evelyn Resh, MPH, CNM, is a sexuality counselor, author, and nurse-midwife with over twenty years of experience in clinical practice. Her first book, The Secret Lives of Teen Girls: What Your Mother Wouldn’t Talk About but Your Daughter Needs to Know (Hay House, 2009), takes a distinctly sex-positive view of teenage girls and sex. Her second book, Women, Sex, Power, and Pleasure; Getting the Life (and Sex) You Want, will be released March 2013. She has been a contributing writer for www.Oprah.com and the Huffington Post and is the director of sexuality programming and counseling for Canyon Ranch in Lenox, MA.   www.evelynresh.com

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The Development of the Self ~ March 18, 2013

Monday, March 18
The Development of the Self
Bard College at Simon’s Rock Student Reading and Discussion hosted by Brighde Moffat and Kirsten Peterson, with Georgia Cate Byler, Eleanor Cardell, Karishma Singh Jani, Jaeme Poncin, Grace Rossman, and Alexis Marie Wint
Blodgett House, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 7–9 p.m.

This panel is comprised of eight Simon’s Rock students. The development of the younger female self in relation to forces such as culture, religion, family, and geography will be explored through the personal essay and other creative formats.

Brighde Moffat is a proud feminist and, as such, is invested in deconstructing dualisms. Living in so many places has deeply affected her perception of place, space, and time, which has developed into an ever-growing passion for geography. This past summer, Brighde worked in the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps to ensure the protection of woodlands, and will be a corps member again this summer.

Kirsten Peterson is a Simon’s Rock senior and proud Marylander. She has been writing poetry and short stories since fourth grade and recently began experimenting with personal essays. This year she is writing her thesis on anthropological practices in U.S. foreign relations while participating in an internship at the Railroad Street Youth Project in Great Barrington.

Georgia Cate Byler is a native of Virginia and a Simon’s Rock senior with a double concentration in creative writing and literary studies. Her fiction focuses on child narrative, the creation of identity, and secrets within domestic life.

Eleanor Cardell was born in Chicago and has lived in the suburbs of Los Angeles for most of her life. She has been writing since she was little and reading since she was littler. She enjoys sleeping and hanging out with friends and hopes to graduate from college sometime in the near future, perhaps even with a degree she can use.

Karishma Singh Jani is a Sikh Punjabi Indian who was born in Queens, NY, but has lived most of her life on the eastern coast of Virginia. She is currently a sophomore at Simon’s Rock who is passionate about music, writing, and her heritage. Ultimately, she aspires to become a doctor.

Jaeme Poncin is a first-year student at Simon’s Rock. She was born in Sacramento, CA. She attended the Sacramento Waldorf School, where her love for creative writing and art were born. She plans to study cultural anthropology and creative writing, hoping to travel and live outside of the United States.

Grace Rossman is a sophomore at Simon’s Rock. Born and raised in Great Barrington, MA, Grace has been surrounded—and deeply affected—by the beauty of the regal Berkshire Hills. At Simon’s Rock, her long-standing love for and devotion to the natural world evolved into a passion for the field of environmental studies.

Alexis Marie Wint is a twenty-year-old Brooklyn native with a passion for social justice and change. She is an actress, poet, writer, spoken word artist, and community activist. She is currently working on her senior thesis, a collection of short stories and poems which celebrate the beauty and articulate the struggles of African-American woman. Alexis Marie aspires to be an English professor and ultimately share her gift of word with the world.

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Virtual Artists’ Collective Reading and Discussion ~ March 22, 2013

Friday, March 22
Virtual Artists’ Collective Reading and Discussion
With Rosebud Ben-Oni and Arisa White
MCLA Gallery 51, 51 Main Street, North Adams, 6–8 p.m.

Writers Arisa White and Rosebud Ben-Oni offer a cross-cultural perspective on growing up in fragmented, hostile, and uncompromising environments, including coming to terms with loving women in central Brooklyn and Arab East Jerusalem. While their poetry exposes the gritty realities of women whose spaces demand constant adaptation, the poets seek to create more solid ground in HER KIND (herkind.org), the official blog of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, a forum to create lively conversation about issues that are often dismissed or overlooked by the mainstream media. Arisa and Rosebud will present a joint reading and discuss their work for HER KIND. They will explain how writing can serve as an agent for positive social change by encouraging women to define their own terms regarding the valuing of women’s voices.

Rosebud Ben-Oni was a Rackham Merit Fellow at the University of Michigan, where she earned an MFA in poetry. She was a Horace Goldsmith Scholar at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where she completed postgraduate research. A playwright at New Perspectives Theater, she is working on a new play that will feature music by Carlton Zeus. Her work appears in Arts & Letters, B O D Y, Borderlands, Texas Poetry Review, and Puerto del Sol. Her short story “A Way out of the Colonia” won the Editor’s Prize in Camera Obscura. She writes the series “On 7 Train Love” for the blog of Sundog Lit. Nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize, her debut book of poems SOLECISM will be published by Virtual Artists Collective in early 2013. rosebudbenoni.com

Arisa White is a Cave Canem fellow and an MFA graduate from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Her debut collection, Hurrah’s Nest, was published by Virtual Artists Collective and is the 2012 winner of the San Francisco Book Festival Award for poetry. Her second collection, A Penny Saved, was published by Willow Books in November 2012. Selected by the San Francisco Bay Guardian for the 2010 Hot Pink List as a queer poet to watch out for, Arisa is also part of the PlayGround writers’ pool at Berkeley Repertory Theatre; her play Frigidare was staged for the 15th Annual Best of PlayGround Festival. arisawhite.com

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The Female Rebel: Women Writers on the Antiheroine in Fiction ~ March 27, 2013

Wednesday, March 27
The Female Rebel: Women Writers on the Antiheroine in Fiction
Hosted by Edie Meidav, with Rebecca Chace, Rebecca Godfrey, and Rebecca Wolff
Blodgett House, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 7–9 p.m.

Judith and her maidservant, by Artemisia Gentileschi, c. 1612-1613

What is it that women want? What do they do when their desire is thwarted—or scripted upon them—by the society in which they live? Do they choose madness, silence, minstrelsy, or power-mad cunning, as so many of Shakespeare’s characters testify? Or do women find ways to cross the boundaries of ethnicity, class, family order, and tradition and to find new ways to tell an artful truth? In this panel, moderated by Edie Meidav, fiction writers Rebecca Chace, Rebecca Godfrey, and Rebecca Wolff explore what it means to write and to read the antiheroine, yesterday and today. Does rebellion create good art? Does art create good rebellion? Come to this panel with your questions and leave with an expanded vision of possibilities.

Edie Meidav, writer-in-residence at Bard College, is the author of three award-winning novels: Lola, California; Crawl Space; and The Far Field: A Novel of Ceylon. Her next novel is Dogs of Cuba. Her works have been selected as editorial picks by the New York Times and other reviewers. Her recent work on Cuba appears in the literary journals Conjunctions and Zyzzyvawww.ediemeidav.com

Rebecca Chace’s novel Leaving Rock Harbor was named Editor’s Choice by the New York Times Book Review and was a finalist for the 2010 New England Book Award. Her memoir Chautauqua Summer was a New York Times Book Review Notable Book and Editor’s Choice; her novel Capture the Flag was adapted for the screen with director Lisanne Skyler. Chace has received the Showtime Tony Cox Screenwriting Award (Short Film) at the Nantucket Film Festival, 2010.   rebeccachace.com

Rebecca Godfrey, photo by Brigitte Lacombe

Rebecca Godfrey is the author of the novel The Torn Skirt and of the nonfiction book Under The Bridge, about the trials for murder of seven teenage girls, which received Canada’s most prestigious prize for literary nonfiction. It has been optioned for film by Reese Witherspoon’s Type A Productions. Godfrey currently teaches a seminar, “Anti-heroines,” at Columbia University and is working on a book on this topic.   www.rebeccagodfrey.com

Rebecca Wolff is the author of three books of poems (Manderley, Figment, The King) and a novel (The Beginners, Riverhead, 2011). She is the founding editor of Fence, and Fence Books, and the Constant Critic. She is a fellow at the New York State Writers Institute at the University at Albany. She lives in Hudson, NY.   rebeccawolff.com

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Solo: Writing Our Own Adventures ~ March 30, 2013

Saturday March 30
Solo: Writing Our Own Adventures
Reading and discussion with Dorothy Albertini, Dawn Paul, and Susan Fox Rogers
South Berkshire Friends Meeting House, 280 State Road, Great Barrington, 3–5 p.m.

Solo adventurers and writers Dorothy Albertini, Dawn Paul, and Susan Fox Rogers will talk about their adventures in the wild and the joys and complications of journeying solo, whether on a trail, by bike, or in a kayak. All three will read from recent work—essays and fiction. This panel will inspire and inform those interested in chronicling their outdoor adventures.

Dorothy Albertini received her MFA from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College in 2008. Recent work is in the current issue of Peep/Show. Her work has also appeared in Drunken Boat, Tantalum, the Brooklyn Rail, Going Alone (ed. Susan Fox Rogers), and NANO Fiction, where she was the winner of the first annual NANO fiction contest. The winning piece was also nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She teaches with Bard’s Institute for Writing and Thinking and the Language and Thinking Program. She writes about bears and people in Poughkeepsie, NY.  dorothyalbertini.com

Dawn Paul is the author of two novels, The Country of Loneliness and Still River. She has created a text/video with painter Ben Johnson and has worked with choreographer Kelley Donovan on dance/poetry pieces. Dawn has received fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center, the Ragdale Foundation, and the Spring Creek Project. She teaches writing and is the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs at Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts.  corvidwriters.org/dpaul/index.html

Susan Fox Rogers is the author of My Reach: A Hudson River Memoir and the editor of twelve book anthologies, including Solo: On Her Own Adventure and Going Alone: Women’s Adventures in the Wild. She teaches the creative essay at Bard College, where she is also codirector of the Environmental and Urban Studies Program.   susanfoxrogers.com