On the eve of her new book’s release, an anniversary for Harper Lee’s classic

On this day in 1960, To Kill a Mockingbird first hit book stands in the United States, leaving a deep impression during a tumultuous time of protest and defiance. Critics and activists alike lauded the book for its frank yet sensitive and somehow reassuring treatment of race and inequality in the South. Here was a … [Read more…]

Mary McLeod Bethune: Race, Equality, and Democracy

On this day in 1875, educator and civil rights leader Mary McLeod Bethune was born in Mayesville, South Carolina, to former slaves on a rice and cotton plantation. Most of her brothers and sisters were born into slavery, and the family’s only access to education was a one-room schoolhouse established by the Presbyterian Board of … [Read more…]

Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter on Grace and Compromise

Late into the evening, the South Carolina House of Representatives continued its debate, twenty-one days after the Charleston massacre of nine black church members by one white man. In defense of the Confederate flag, Rep. Quinn (R – Lexington) appealed to the memory of the Confederate dead, especially the youth described as so often the … [Read more…]

Southern Women as Keepers of the South

On this day in 1929 writer Shirley Ann “Annie” Grau was born in New Orleans. She was raised in Montgomery and Selma, Alabama, and educated at Tulane University. In an interview with Deep South magazine*, she claimed she hadn’t felt ready for college, “The little finishing schools I’d gone to were really awfully good fundamental … [Read more…]

With a little help from Debbie and the Skanks

As we anticipate the House vote today to remove the Confederate flag at the statehouse and the flag’s historic furling later this week (fingers crossed), let’s remember how powerful and encouraging our community has been the last few weeks. This past weekend in particular was a great example. I heard it from everyone, “This is … [Read more…]

A Mirror of Our Desires

A Review of The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender (by Leslye Walton) The books we are meant to read often find their way to us in a mysterious fashion. I discovered The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender purely by accident while poking around on Goodreads one evening under the search term … [Read more…]