Kimbilio Fellow Rosalyn Story on the Inspiration for her New Novel SING HER NAME

How Sissieretta Jones, Celebrated Black Opera Singer, Enshrined Her Own Story

Aminatta Forna on Transcending the Trauma Narrative

THERE IS A CERTAIN KIND of person who, on being introduced, says, “What’s your story?” I like that way of opening a conversation with someone you have just met. It offers people a way of presenting themselves as they might like to be seen (which may not be the same as how others see them). But […]

Kimbilio Fellow Lindsey Ellis Has an Essay in LitHub

Kimbilio Fellow Gila Berryman on Life as an Adjunct

On the first day of class in September 2014, my undergraduate students stared at me, surprised. They were expecting an instructor who looked more conventional, more white, more male. Yet there I was, a butch-of-center Black woman, with a boyish haircut and a men’s button-down shirt, teaching their first English class at New York City […]

Novelist Naomi Jackson on Her Journey Back to Strength

Three springs ago, I lost the better part of my mind. I remember it starting with my feet. I woke up one February morning in the South Bronx apartment I’d just moved into with my husband, and my feet were so swollen I could barely fit them into my roomiest sneakers. I called in sick […]

On Richard Wright’s THE MAN WHO LIVED UNDERGROUND from London Review of Books

When​ Richard Wright sailed to France in 1946, he was 38 years old and already a legend. He was America’s most famous black writer, the author of two books hailed as classics the moment they were published: the 1940 novel Native Son and the 1945 memoir Black Boy. By ‘choosing exile’, as he put it, he hoped both […]