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[Chestnut Hill, MA, June 23, 2017] The Solstice MFA in Creative Writing Program of Pine Manor College announces it will hold a timely and relevant panel discussion titled, We the People: Race & Identity in Today’s Writing World on Monday, July 10, 2017 from 3:45 – 5:30 p.m. in Haldan Hall (Room 126) at Pine Manor College, 400 Heath Street, Chestnut Hill. The panel is open to the public, and Solstice hopes the community will engage with these artists in this important conversation.  

Nina Simone said it’s “an artist’s duty to reflect the times.” The Solstice MFA in Creative Writing Program at Pine Manor College wanted to highlight this concept during its summer residency. The panel will feature a diverse panel of writers (both in genre and in identity). Panelists will discuss how they create quality art while also holding up a mirror to the world. The discussion will explore social justice, race, and identity in America’s writing community today, focusing on the balance between art and justice. They will talk about how writers might combat negative and unbalanced trends in the literary world and what to take into account when writing about social issues.

Panelists include: Renée Watson (faculty, NAACP Image Award nominee, author of Piecing Me Together), Brendan Kiely (guest, co-author of Coretta Scott King Honor Award-winning All American Boys), Joel Christian Gill (guest, artist-author of Strange Fruit), Laban Carrick Hill (guest, former faculty, author of Harlem Stomp! – National Book Award Finalist), David Yoo (faculty, author of The Choke Artist), Jabari Asim (guest, Executive Editor of The Crisis Magazine and author of Preaching to the Chickens), and Amy Hoffman (faculty, editor-in-chief of Women’s Review of Books, author of Lies About My Family). Our moderator will be the Solstice MFA Program’s Assistant Director, Beth Grosart Little. 

As an undergraduate institution consistently ranked among the most diverse in the country, Pine Manor College emphasizes an inclusive, community-building approach to liberal arts education. The Solstice MFA in Creative Writing reflects the College’s overall mission by creating a supportive, welcoming environment in which writers of all backgrounds are encouraged to take creative risks. We strive to instill in our students an appreciation for the value of community-building and community service, and see engagement with the literary arts not only as a means to personal fulfillment but also as an instrument for real cultural change.

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