Brattleboro Literary Festival Brattleboro Literary Festival
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A Creative Force

Kia Corthron
Moon and the Mars

Kia Corthron Kia Corthron is a playwright and novelist. Moon and the Mars, her second novel, was released in August 2021. Her debut, The Castle Cross the Magnet Carter, was the winner of the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and a New York Times Book Review Editor's Choice. Her plays have been produced nationally and internationally and, for her body of work for the stage, she has garnered the Windham Campbell Prize for Drama, United States Artists Jane Addams Fellowship, the Horton Foote Prize, and others. 

Friday, Oct 15, 7:00-8:15-Panel- Register for A Creative Force

Sunday, Oct 17, 2:30-3:30-Register for Children of Poverty

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Shanta Lee Gander

Shanta Lee Gander is a multidisciplinary artist who was the 2020 recipient of the Arthur Williams Award for Meritorious Service to the Arts. She was named as Diode Editions’ full-length book contest winner for her debut poetry compilation, GHETTOCLAUSTROPHOBIA: Dreamin of Mama While Trying to Speak in Woke Tongues and her second collection of poetry,  Black Metamorphosis, is forthcoming.  She holds an MFA in Creative Non-Fiction and Poetry from the Vermont College of Fine Arts, an MBA from the University of Hartford and an undergraduate degree in Women, Gender and Sexuality from Trinity College. For more on Shanta Lee’s photography and writing, visit

Friday, Oct 15, 7:00PM-8:15 & Sunday, 2:30-3:30-Panels- Register for A Creative Force &  Sunday, 2:30-3:30-Are We Having a Moment? Writing poetry in the time of the pandemic and poetry’s resurgence in the culture

Sunday, Oct 17, 11:30-12:30 -Register for  The First Time

Order Book : Diode Editions June 2021 

Farah Jasmine Griffin
Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature

Farah Jasmine Griffin is the inaugural chair of the African American and African Diaspora Studies Department at Columbia University, where she is also William B. Ransford Professor of English and Comparative Literature. She is the author of numerous books including her new book Read Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature, and her essay on the Harlem Renaissance was included in 400 Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019. She is the recipient of a 2021 Guggenheim Fellowship and she lives in New York.

Friday, Oct 15, 7:00-8:15 & Sunday, Oct 17, 5:45-7:00-Panel- Register for A Creative Force & Why Black Books Matter(Jason Broughton, Glory Edim, W. W. Ralph Eubanks, Farah Jasmine Griffin)

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Bernice L. McFadden
Praise Song for the Butterflies

Bernice L. McFadden is the author of The Book of Harlan (winner of the 2017 American Book Award and the 2017 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work.) in addition to eight other critically acclaimed novels including Sugar, Loving Donovan, Gathering of Waters,  and Glorious. She is a four-time Hurston/Wright Legacy Award finalist, as well as the recipient of three awards from the BCALA. Praise Song for the Butterflies is her latest novel. Her essay on Zora Neale Hurston is included in the #1 NYT bestseller, Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019, which was published in February. Visit her website at, and follow her on Twitter @queenazsa.


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The creative process has long been explored through time, but what does creativity look like through an intersectional lens?  Join us for this conversation with authors Farah Jasmine Griffin, Bernice McFadden, Kia Corthron, as they embark on a conversation with author and artist Shanta Lee Gander.  The conversation will be exploring what creativity means within a moment we are all recognizing as another Black Renaissance for Black creativity.