Author Reading

Lynn Peril

Swimming in the Steno Pool: A Retro Guide to Making It in the Office


“Let her be lovely to look at, charming to talk to, spirited and gay,” began an ad
for a secretarial assistant published in the Chicago Tribune in 1943. Another ad from a
1951 issue of The New York Times barely mentions any required skills, just, “MUST BE
EXTREMELY ATTRACTIVE.” During a time when the success of TV’s Mad Men
romanticizes and critiques the gender-defined executive environments of the 1960s, Lynn
Peril’s new book pokes fun at the outlandish history of sexism and income disparity in
secretarial jobs from the 1940s to the present. As much as Swimming in the Steno Pool is
a fascinating, fun, and profound reminder of how much the workplace has changed, it’s
also a cautionary tale of how much farther we have to go.

Event date: 
Friday, June 10, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

John D’Emilio, co-editor

My Desire for History: Essays in Gay, Community, and Labor History


This collection of essays pays tribute to the pioneering gay historian Allan Bérubé
(1946-2007). Best known for his groundbreaking book, Coming Out Under Fire: The
History of Gay Men and Women in World War II, Bérubé wrote extensively on the
history of sexual politics and the relationship between sexuality, class, and race. John
D’Emilio, professor of History and Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of
Illinois at Chicago, and Estelle Freedman of Stanford University, have selected 16 of
Bérubé’s most important essays, providing a retrospective on his life and work, while
documenting the emergence of a grassroots lesbian and gay history movement.

Event date: 
Thursday, June 9, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Rachel Lloyd

Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls Are Not for Sale, an Activist Finds Her
Calling and Heals Herself


At thirteen, Rachel Lloyd found herself spiraling into a life of abuse as a victim of
commercial sexual exploitation. Lloyd was eventually able to escape, but as founder of
GEMS (Girls Educational and Mentoring Services), a groundbreaking program for girls
ages 12-21 who have experienced sexual exploitation and trafficking, Lloyd knows that

her success story is an exception. By daring to share her story and those of many girls
like her, she opens our eyes to the shocking realities of commercial exploitation of girls
in America, reminding us that human trafficking is not only a Third World problem.

Event date: 
Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Leslie Jamison & Kiki Petrosino

Leslie Jamison
The Gin Closet
Kiki Petrosino
Fort Red Border


Tonight’s program brings together two remarkably talented emerging literary
voices. Leslie Jamison, graduate of Harvard and the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, is
currently a Ph.D. candidate in American Literature at Yale. Her gorgeous first novel, The
Gin Closet, reveals the lives of two troubled women united by loneliness. It was
nominated for the Los Angeles Times book prize and named one of the best books of
2010 by the San Francisco Chronicle. Booklist called it, “An exquisite blues of a novel.”
Poet Kiki Petrosino holds graduate degrees from the University of Chicago and the Iowa
Writers Workshop. Her poems have appeared in FENCE, The New York Times, The Iowa
Review, The Harvard Review, and elsewhere. She is currently a professor at the
University of Louisville.

Event date: 
Thursday, June 2, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Sappho’s Salon

Sappho’s Salon: A Provocative Night of Lesbian Diversions

Presents a Night of Lesbian Laughs, featuring the comedy of Janet Kane, Meg O’Rourke Nana Rodriguez, Sissy Van Dyke, and Tamale

$7–$10 sliding cover charge includes food and wine

 

Tonight’s installment of our popular monthly salon for lesbians and their friends features five local lesbian comics that are sure to keep you in stitches. Janet Kane has performed in venues throughout the country. Her work riffs everyday life, family, friends, and the boring workplace. She delivers her material as though every day were “casual Friday.” Meg O’ Rourke is a graduate of both the Second City Conservatory and Improv Olympics training schools. Recently, she performed stand up at Zanie’s Rising Star Showcase and Female Funnies showcase. Nana Rodriguez says, “People of my life have told me how funny I was, and I just noticed that I could make people laugh. It just seemed like comedy was following me.” She has performed at the Micky O’s Local Locos comedy show and Laugh Tracks at Sidetracks, among other venues, and she participate in the weekly Bibliotoca Popular open mic nights. Sissy Van Dyke has performed her comedy at Sappho’s Salon, Cake Chicago, and POW-WOW. The author of the book The Adventures of Sissy Van Dyke, she writes a weekly blog of the same name. Tamale is a comedian and disciplinary performer who travels far and wide, looking for fancy decorations for her hair. Recently this pursuit brought her as far west as San Francisco, where she competed for the title of International Ms. Leather. Rounding out tonight’s show, DJ SpinNikki will play us in and out of sets. Door proceeds benefit the performers and the Women’s Voices Fund.

Event date: 
Saturday, May 21, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Renny Golden

Blood Desert: Witnesses 1820–1880

 

In narrative poems that take us back to New Mexico in the nineteenth century, Renny Golden (Hour of the Furnaces) resurrects the spirits of native people and of those who came west. To read these poems is to hear the voices of Padre Martinez and Bishop Lamy, Geronimo and General Crook, Billy the Kid and Sister Blandina.

 

Blood Desert is history that turns into song, and readers are drawn into a chorus of voices that have gone unheardwomen, indigenous peoples, and more. What marvelous poetry, what powerful stories!”

Demetria Martinez, author of Mother Tongue

Event date: 
Thursday, May 19, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Stephanie Davies, The Urban Worm Girl

Composting Inside & Out

 

Whether you create a compost heap, bury your scraps, ferment them, tumble them, or feed them to the worms, you too can be successful with composting. Use the fruit of your labor on your houseplants, lawn, flowerbeds, or garden. Reclaim your waste and your energy to good use. If you’ve always been interested in composting but thought it was incongruent with city life, this program is for you!

Event date: 
Wednesday, May 18, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Reading by Students from Peirce School’s 7th Grade

All year, Peirce School's entire 7th Grade has been exploring its writing skills in a weekly program with Free Street Theatre. Tonight students will share some of their writing with you!  Come support these students as they read from the work they've developed using Free Street's concepts of flow and creativity. 

Event date: 
Monday, May 16, 2011 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Linda Stout

Collective Visioning: How Groups Can Work Together for a Just and Sustainable World

 

Many of us hope for a promising and more equitable future, but despite well-intentioned efforts, progressive political organizers often fall short when it comes to creating groups in which people from all backgrounds feel comfortable speaking up. And while progressives are good at articulating what they are against, they often struggle to be specific about what they are for and then uniting behind a positive and energizing vision. In her new book Linda Stout, founder and executive director of Spirit in Action, develops a complete guide for leaders creating inclusive movements that start from a place of hope to create a better, more just tomorrow.

Event date: 
Friday, May 13, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Rachel DeWoskin

Big Girl Small

 

(Rescheduled from April)

In her hilarious and heartbreaking third book, Rachel DeWoskin (Foreign Babes in Beijing) introduces bright and sardonic 16-year old Judy Lohden. When we first meet Judy, she is hiding out in a seedy motel on the edge of Ann Arbor, trying to outlast a media frenzy. From here, she recounts the circumstances that led her, three-foot-nine-inch teen, to these circumstances, which include falling victim to “the worst Stephen King Carrie prank in the history of dating.” In a starred review, Publishers Weekly raved, “It’s a rare author who is willing to subject her protagonist to the extreme ranges of degradation and redemption to which DeWoskin subjects Judy; thankfully, she manages it beautifully.

Event date: 
Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Bare Boned Theater Company Staged Reading

Bare Boned Theater Company

Staged Reading: The Whiptail Lizard Lesbian

$10 suggested donation

 

James D. Clayton’s play, The Whiptail Lizard Lesbian, delves into the world of childbirth through the eyes of two young lesbians, exploring what makes a family, a mother, a woman. This staged reading is part of Bare Boned Theater’s Outside/In festival. A short discussion will follow.

Event date: 
Tuesday, May 10, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Ellen Wade Beals, editor, and contributors

Solace in So Many Words

 

What does solace mean? According to writer and editor EllenWade Beals, solace is a mixture of love, hope, comfort, truth, and so much more. In this new anthology 52 writers, familiar and new, present a satisfying assortment of writing on loss, love, hope, and most of all, solace. Join Beals and contributors Susan Spaeth Cherry, Kathleen Kirk, Barry Silesky, D. J. Lachance, Lisa Liken, and Joan Corwin for a reading and discussion of this intriguing new collection.

 

“This collection of many different kinds of writing, all of it excellent, consistently avoids the easy and obvious answer. Each entry feels fresh, as it offers yet another angle on finding a way to remain intact through life’s complexity.”

Thomas Moore, author of Care of the Soul      

Event date: 
Friday, May 6, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Becky Beaupre Gillespie

Good Enough is the New Perfect: Finding Happiness and Success in Modern Motherhood

 

Today’s women are achieving greater personal success than ever before and choosing to have families on their own terms and timelines. It would seem that this unprecedented ability to merge family and career goals would mean that women are happier than ever, but study after study has demonstrated that women’s happiness levels have been decreasing. Why is this, and what can be done about it? Based on exclusive data, more than 100 in-depth interviews, and the latest research, Good Enough is the New Perfect builds on the growing “anti-perfectionist parenting” movement. Told through the inspiring stories of real moms, it blends expert advice and solid research to offer a new roadmap for the balancing act of motherhood.

Event date: 
Sunday, May 1, 2011 - 4:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

Mary Hudson & Monireh Mohammadi

Misogyny: the World's Oldest Prejudice

 

Hudson, the wife of the deceased author of Misogyny, renowned Irish journalist and author Jack Holland, will be here to talk about her husband’s book. Holland set out to answer a daunting question: how do you explain the oppression and brutalization of half the world's population by the other half, throughout history? The result is an eye-opening journey through centuries, continents and civilizations as it looks at both historical and contemporary attitudes toward women. Misogyny encompasses the Church, witch hunts, sexual theory, Nazism, pro-life campaigners, and finally, today's developing world, where women are increasingly and disproportionately at risk because of radicalized religious beliefs, famine, war, and disease. Mary will be joined by the translator of the book, from English into Persian, Monireh Mohammadi. This event is arranged and co-sponsored by Pasfarda Arts & Culural Exchange, a non-profit organization committed to the promotion and global exchange of arts and culture. For more information, please visit Pasfarda Arts & Cultural Exchange: http://www.pasfarda.org/EventDetails.aspx?id=16"

 

Event date: 
Thursday, April 28, 2011 - 7:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N. Clark St.
60640-2122 Chicago
us

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