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On America

Online Event: Culture and Conflict—Exploration and Finding ‘Home’ in the Americas


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Thursday, 7:30 pm EDT May 14, 2020

7:30pm ET / 4:30pm PT

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Travel back in time to Trinidad as it shifts from Spanish to British rule, then to the Crow Nation of Montana in the time of Westward expansion in this important addition to the American story. Lauren Francis-Sharma, author of Book of the Little Axe, will be in conversation with Tiphanie Yanique, author of Land of Love and Drowning.

Presented in collaboration with the Brooklyn Caribbean Literary Festival.

Purchase Book of the Little Axe at Our Online Bookstore



  • Francis-Sharma, Lauren (credit Anna Carson DeWitt) - Carla Cain-Walther

    Lauren Francis-Sharma

    Lauren Francis-Sharma

    Lauren Francis-Sharma is the author of ‘Til the Well Runs Dry, her first novel, which was awarded the Honor Fiction Prize by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and short-listed for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing. ‘Til the Well Runs Dry was chosen as an O, The Oprah Magazine Summer Reading Pick and lauded by the New York Times, USA Today, Essence magazine, and People magazine amongst other publications. Most recently, Lauren was a contributor to Marita Golden’s anthology, Us Against Alzheimer’s. Lauren, a child of Trinidadian immigrants, has written about the Caribbean in both her novels and the story of her grandmother’s journey to the United States, the inspiration behind her acclaimed first novel, was the subject of a feature article in both the Washington Post in July 2014 and the Baltimore Sun in March 2015.

    Lauren is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan Law School. She is the owner of D.C. Writer’s Room, Assistant Director of Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, a MacDowell Fellow, as well as mother to two children and their dog. Book of the Little Axe, published by Grove/Atlantic, is her highly anticipated sophomore novel.

  • Yanique c. Debbie Grossman - Carla Cain-Walther

    Tiphanie Yanique

    Tiphanie Yanique

    Tiphanie Yanique is the author of the poetry collection, Wife, which won the 2016 Bocas Prize in Caribbean poetry and the United Kingdom’s 2016 Forward/Felix Dennis Prize for a First Collection. Tiphanie is also the author of the novel, Land of Love and Drowning, which won the 2014 Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Award from the Center for Fiction, the Phillis Wheatley Award for Pan-African Literature, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Family Foundation Award, and was listed by NPR as one of the Best Book of 2014. Land of Love and Drowning was also a finalist for the Orion Award in Environmental Literature and the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award. She is also the author of a collection of stories, How to Escape from a Leper Colony, which won her a listing as one of the National Book Foundation’s 5Under35. Her writing has also won the Bocas Award for Caribbean Fiction, the Boston Review Prize in Fiction, a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers Award, a Pushcart Prize, a Fulbright Scholarship and an Academy of American Poet’s Prize. She has been listed by the Boston Globe as one of the sixteen cultural figures to watch out for and her writing has been published in the New York Times, Best African American Fiction, the Wall Street Journal, American Short Fiction and other places. Tiphanie is from the Virgin Islands and received tenure from The New School before heading to the English Department at Wesleyan University as an associate professor, where she is also the Director of the Creative Writing Program. She lives in New Rochelle, New York with her family. For more about Tiphanie in her own words, check out Race, Power and Storytelling: An Interview with Tiphanie Yanique on Kweli.