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Celebrated author Kiese Laymon to hold book signing and reading

Celebrated author Kiese Laymon to hold book signing and reading Tuesday

Celebrated Southern writer Kiese Laymon will be at LeMoyne-Owen College Tuesday, Nov. 6, to read from and sign copies of his critically acclaimed memoir “Heavy: An American Memoir.”

The college is hosting the event, which is part of a national tour by the Lyceum Circuit, in partnership with the ACE Awareness Foundation in Memphis. The reading will be followed by a conversation with Laymon and Assistant Professor of Sociology at Rhodes College Zandria F. Robinson, whose work focuses on inequality; race, class, gender, and sexuality; black feminism; and popular culture and media.

The event will be in LOC’s Velma R. McLemore Lecture Hall (Room 31) in Brownlee Hall, the college’s main administration building. LeMoyne-Owen is at 807 Walker Ave.

The event is open and free to the public. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.; the reading and conversation begin at 7 p.m.

“Heavy:  An American Memoir”  has been described as a “powerful and provocative memoir (that) … explores what the weight of a lifetime of secrets, lies, and deception does to a black body, a black family, and a nation teetering on the brink of moral collapse.”

“Heavy” has garnered positive reviews across the nation. For example, The Boston Globe said it is “a tapestry of heart and heartache.’ O Magazine labeled it “raw, cathartic.” Entertainment Weekly said it is “a refined, warm, generously poetic literary work.”

Laymon was born and reared in Jackson, Mississippi. He attended Millsaps College and Jackson State University before graduating from Oberlin College. He earned an MFA from Indiana University and also is the author of the novel “Long Division” and a collection of essays, “How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America.”

He currently is the Ottilie Schillig Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi. He served as the Distinguished Visiting Professor of Nonfiction at the University of Iowa in fall 2017.

Laymon has written essays, stories and reviews for numerous publications, including Esquire, McSweeneys, New York Times, ESPN the Magazine, Colorlines, NPR, LitHub, The Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, PEN Journal, Fader, Oxford American, The Best American Series, Ebony, Travel and Leisure, Paris Review and Guernica.

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