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On America

On America: Emily Raboteau on Lessons for Survival with Garnette Cadogan

Thursday, 7:00 pm EST March 14, 2024

The Center for Fiction
& Livestreamed

The Center for Fiction welcomes back American Book Award-winning author Emily Raboteau (The Professor’s Daughter, Searching for Zion) to discuss her new collection of essays, Lessons for Survival: Mothering Against the Apocalypse. In this powerful work that is “as layered and magnificent as essayistic-writing gets” (Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy), Raboteau reflects on the intersectional fights for environmental and racial justice through the lens of motherhood. Her book is a moving exploration of what it takes to raise children to thrive in a world of inequities, without coming undone yourself. Raboteau is joined by essayist Garnette Cadogan for a rich conversation on her work, in which she will also share some photographs from the book. After the conversation, Raboteau will sign books.

Lessons_for_Survival Cover Large

In Conversation

  • Emily Raboteau CREDIT Rachel Eliza Griffiths Large

    Emily Raboteau

    Emily Raboteau

    Emily Raboteau writes at the intersection of social and environmental justice, race, climate change, and parenthood. Her previous books are Searching for Zion (2013), winner of an American Book Award and finalist for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and the cult classic novel, The Professor’s Daughter (2005). Since the release of the 2018 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, she has focused on writing about the climate crisis. A contributing editor at Orion magazine and a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books, Raboteau’s essays have recently appeared and been anthologized in the New Yorker, the New York Times, New York magazine, the Nation, Best American Science Writing, Best American Travel Writing, and elsewhere. Her distinctions include an inaugural Climate Narratives Prize from Arizona State University, the Deadline Club Award in Feature Reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists’ New York chapter, and grants and fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the Bronx Council on the Arts, the Robert B. Silvers Foundation, the Lannan Foundation and Yaddo. She serves regularly as nonfiction faculty at the Bread Loaf Environmental Writing Conference and is a full professor at the City College of New York (CUNY) in Harlem, once known as “the poor man’s Harvard.” She lives in the Bronx with her husband, the novelist Victor LaValle, and their two children.


    Photo Credit: Rachel Eliza Griffiths

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    Garnette Cadogan

    Garnette Cadogan

    Garnette Cadogan is the Tunney Lee Distinguished Lecturer in Urbanism at the School of Architecture and Planning at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


    Photo Credit: Francesco Lanza