Casita Maria Book Club

Join us at Casita Maria Center for Arts & Education when we will meet to discuss books that reflect on the artwork featured in the current exhibition RESPECT by Timothy Okamura, Jessica Spence, and Nichole Washington. These restorative conversations are related to women, migration and culture. It’s free to join, and free books will be given to the first 15 participants.

Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America by Ayana Byrd and Lori Tharps
Hair Story is a historical and anecdotal exploration of Black Americans’ tangled hair roots. A chronological look at the culture and politics behind the ever-changing state of Black hair from fifteenth-century Africa to the present-day United States, it ties the personal to the political and the popular.

Casita Maria Center for Arts & Education
928 Simpson St. 6th Fl. Bronx, NY
Hunts Point neighborhood

Wednesdays, 6:30pm to 8:00pm
Oct. 23, 30 Nov. 6, 13, & 20, 2019

Light refreshments available during book club meetings. 
Families welcomed, however, childcare is not available at this time.

RESPECT by Timothy Okamura, Jessica Spence, and Nichole Washington
A three person multimedia exhibition celebrating black womanhood by New York based artists Timothy Okamura, Jessica Spence, and Nichole Washington. The title honors soul singer Aretha Franklin’s feminist anthem “Respect”, adapted from Otis Redding’s original, made famous in 1967.

Casita Maria Center for Arts & Education
Wednesdays, 630pm

Jan 8, 15, 22, 29, & Feb 5, 2020
Searching for Zion: The Quest for Home in the African Diaspora by Emily Raboteau (One Book One Bronx selection)
A decade in the making, Emily Raboteau’s Searching for Zion takes readers around the world on an unexpected adventure of faith. Both one woman’s quest for a place to call “home” and an investigation into a people’s search for the Promised Land, this landmark work of creative nonfiction is a trenchant inquiry into contemporary and historical ethnic displacement.

March 25, April 1, 8, 15, & 22, 2020
Citizen Illegal by José Olivarez (book club and poetry workshop)
In this stunning debut, poet José Olivarez explores the stories, contradictions, joys, and sorrows that embody life in the spaces between Mexico and America. He paints vivid portraits of good kids, bad kids, families clinging to hope, life after the steel mills, gentrifying barrios, and everything in between. 

June 3, 10, 17, 24, & July 1, 2020
Dealing in Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
The Outsiders meets Mad Max: Fury Road in this “daring and dramatic” (Victor LaValle, author of The Changeling) dystopian novel about sisterhood and the cruel choices people are forced to make in order to survive.

July 15, 22, 29, Aug 5, & 12, 2020
Locked Gray / Linked Blue: Stories by Kem Joy Ukwu
Family dynamics, bad romance, first-date tension, work, and money haunt the New Yorkers in these stories as they nevertheless triumph. A sister is faced with the individual, human reality of the Nigerian diaspora; a daughter navigates her difficult mother’s wedding-day crisis; an unexpected proposal from a neighbor represents hope and resignation in equal measure.

Girl in the Mirror: Three Generations of Black Women in Motion
by Natasha Tarpley

Both historical and personal, Girl in the Mirror traces Tarpley’s grandparents’ movements from Alabama to Chicago, her mother’s move to Boston after her father’s death, and her own trip to Africa and back. Tarpley emerges at the end reflected in the lives, struggles, and loves of those black people who have traveled the road before her.
September 11, 18, 25, October 2, & 9, 2019