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Village Weavers: Myriam J. A. Chancy in conversation with Annell López

Event date: 
Tuesday, April 23, 2024 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm

This event takes place on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. Register here.

Charis welcomes Myriam J. A. Chancy in conversation with Annell López for a celebration of Village Weavers, an extraordinary and enduring story of two families—forever joined by country, and by long-held secrets—and two girls with a bond that refuses to be broken.

In 1940s’ Port-au-Prince, Gertie and Sisi become fast childhood friends, despite being on opposite ends of the social and economic ladder. As young girls, they build their unlikely friendship—until a deathbed revelation ripples through their families and tears them apart. After François Duvalier’s rule turns deadly in the 1950s, Sisi moves to Paris, while Gertie marries into a wealthy Dominican family. Across decades and continents, through personal success and failures, they are parted and reunited, slowly learning the truth of their singular relationship. Finally, six decades later, with both women in the United States, a sudden phone call brings them back together once more to reckon with and—perhaps—forgive the past.

Told with power and frankness, Village Weavers confronts the silences around class, race, and nationality, charts the moments when lives are irrevocably forced apart, and envisions two girls—connected their entire lives—who try to break inherited cycles of mistrust and find ways back into each other’s hearts.

Myriam J. A. Chancy is the author most recently of the novel Village Weavers (Tin House). Her previous novel, What Storm, What Thunder, was named a "Best Book of 2021," by NPR, KirkusLibrary Journal, the Boston GlobeGlobe & Mail, shortlisted for the Caliba Golden Poppy Award & Aspen Words Literary Prize, longlisted for Brooklyn Public Library Book Prize & the OCM Bocas Prize, and awarded an ABA from the Before Columbus Foundation. Her past novels include: The Loneliness of Angels, winner of the 2011 Guyana Prize in Literature Caribbean Award, Best Fiction 2010; The Scorpion’s Claw and Spirit of Haiti, shortlisted in the Best First Book Category, Canada/Caribbean region of the Commonwealth Prize, 2004. She is also the author of several academic monographs, including Harvesting Haiti: Reflections on Unnatural Disasters & Framing Silence: Revolutionary Novels by Haitian Women. Her recent writings have appeared in Journal, Electric Literature, and Guernica. She is a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and HBA Chair of the Humanities at Scripps College in California.

Annell López is a Dominican immigrant. She is the winner of the Louise Meriwether First Book Prize and the author of the short story collection I’LL GIVE YOU A REASON from the Feminist Press forthcoming April 9th. A Peter Taylor Fellow at the Kenyon Review Writers Workshops, her work has also received support from Tin House and has appeared in Guernica, American Short Fiction, Michigan Quarterly Review, Brooklyn Rail, Refinery29 and elsewhere. López received her MFA from the University of New Orleans. She is working on a novel.

This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices.

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Event address: 
Village Weavers By Myriam JA Chancy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781959030379
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Tin House Books - April 2nd, 2024

A TIME Best Book of April

“Chancy is one of our most brilliant writers and storytellers.”—Edwidge Danticat

“Myriam J. A. Chancy is a masterful writer.”—José Olivarez

What Storm, What Thunder By Myriam JA Chancy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781953534385
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Tin House Books - August 23rd, 2022

American Book Award Winner

Aspen Words Literary Prize Finalist

A NPR, Boston Globe, New York Public Library, Chicago Public Library, and Library Journal Best Book of the Year

“Stunning.” —Margaret Atwood

Spirit of Haiti By Myriam J. a. Chancy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781438495125
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: State University of New York Press - November 1st, 2023

A moving tale of contemporary Haiti told through the intersecting lives of four young people struggling to hold on to hope and their identities amid a militarized coup in the early 1990s.

Harvesting Haiti: Reflections on Unnatural Disasters By Myriam J. A. Chancy Cover Image
ISBN: 9781477327814
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: University of Texas Press - October 10th, 2023

2024 Longlist OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature, Bocas Lit Fest

This collection ponders the personal and political implications for Haitians at home and abroad resulting from the devastating 2010 earthquake.

The 7.0 magnitude earthquake that struck Haiti in January 2010 was a debilitating event that followed decades of political, social, and financial

Framing Silence: Revolutionary Novels by Haitian Women By Myriam J. A. Chancy Cover Image
ISBN: 9780813523408
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Rutgers University Press - February 1st, 1997

Raped and colonized, coerced and silenced--this has been the position of Haitian women within their own society, as well as how they have been seen by foreign occupiers. Romanticized symbols of nationhood, they have served, however unwillingly, as a politicized site of contestation between opposing forces.

I'll Give You a Reason: Stories By Annell López Cover Image
ISBN: 9781558613126
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Feminist Press - April 9th, 2024

The vibrant stories in I'll Give You a Reason explore race, identity, connection, and belonging in the Ironbound, an immigrant neighborhood in Newark, New Jersey. A young widow goes on her first date since her husband's death and finds herself hunting a bear in the woods with a near stranger.

Event Summary: 
An extraordinary and enduring story of two families—forever joined by country, and by long-held secrets—and two girls with a bond that refuses to be broken.