Shayla Lawson and Alexander Chee for This is Major!
We're psyched to host a conversation between Shayla Lawson, an author you definitely need to know if you don't yet, and beloved author and litizen Alexander Chee. We'll be chating about Lawson's latest book, a celebration of Black womanhood that reads like manna from heaven. This event will be held digitally via crowdcast! You can get tickets via the button below for any size donation (seriously, whatever!) or for the book + link option that will get you a signed copy of This is Major!
ABOUT THE BOOK
Named one of the most anticipated books of the year by USA Today, Bitch Magazine, Parade, Salon and Ms. Magazine
From a fierce and humorous new voice comes a relevant, insightful, and riveting collection of personal essays on the richness and resilience of black girl culture--for readers of Samantha Irby, Roxane Gay, Morgan Jerkins, and Lindy West.
Shayla Lawson is major. You don't know who she is. Yet. But that's okay. She is on a mission to move black girls like herself from best supporting actress to a starring role in the major narrative. Whether she's taking on workplace microaggressions or upending racist stereotypes about her home state of Kentucky, she looks for the side of the story that isn't always told, the places where the voices of black girls haven't been heard.
The essays in This is Major ask questions like: Why are black women invisible to AI? What is "black girl magic"? Or: Am I one viral tweet away from becoming Twitter famous? And: How much magic does it take to land a Tinder date?
With a unique mix of personal stories, pop culture observations, and insights into politics and history, Lawson sheds light on these questions, as well as the many ways black women and girls have influenced mainstream culture--from their style, to their language, and even their art--and how "major" they really are.
Timely, enlightening, and wickedly sharp, This Is Major places black women at the center--no longer silenced, no longer the minority.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shayla Lawson is the author of three books of poetry—A Speed Education in Human Being, the chapbook Pantone, and I Think I’m Ready to see Frank Ocean. She was born in Rochester, Minnesota, grew up in Lexington, Kentucky, studied architecture in Italy and spent a few years as a Dutch housewife—milkmaid braids and all. She teaches at Amherst College and lives in Brooklyn, NY.
ABOUT THE IN CONVO PARTNER
Alexander Chee is the author of the novels Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night, and the essay collection How To Write An Autobiographical Novel. He is a contributing editor at The New Republic, and an editor at large at VQR. His essays and stories have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, T Magazine, The Sewaneee Review, The Yale Review, and Guernica, and have been anthologized in the 2016 and 2019 Best American Essays. He is an associate professor of English and Creative Writing at Dartmouth College.