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Boston, MA — Join artists, writers, and readers in a citywide discussion of Men We Reaped, a compelling memoir that tackles race, masculinity, and misfortune in the American South. An artful take on the book club, ICA Reads connects contemporary literature with work on view at the museum. The ICA highlights one book per year and this year’s selection highlights the “raw, beautiful and dangerous” writing of National Book Award–winning author Jesmyn Ward and her moving memoir Men We Reaped. Join one of our art and book discussions to explore issues of race, gender, and history, among other themes, found in the book and in art at the ICA. On Sun, April 10 author Jesmyn Ward will present a reading and thought-provoking conversation about Men We Reaped with artist Steve Locke, whose work was featured in a solo exhibition at the ICA in 2013.
Recounting the tragic deaths of five young men from her rural community within four years, author Jesmyn Ward attempts to understand a history haunted by economic strife and racism. She also tells her own story of familial love, community, infidelity, social friction, addiction, strength, and what it’s like to have survived. In conjunction with art works on view at the ICA, readers will be invited to consider the book’s themes and craft, as well as artist’s role in retelling history in the wake of tragedy.
Ways to Participate
Download the discussion guide for yourself or your book club at https://www.icaboston.org/ICAreads.
Go on a tour with your friends or book club. Specially trained guides will highlight connections between Men We Reaped and works on view at the ICA. Visit https://www.icaboston.org/ICAreads for details.
Attend a Gallery Discussion on Sun, March 20 at 11 AM and Sun, April 3 at 11 AM. This program is co-facilitated by Emily Alyssa Owens and ICA educators.
Join the online conversation at #ICAreads.
The Artist’s Voice: Jesmyn Ward with Steve Locke on Sun, April 10 at 3:00 PM. FREE tickets are required and available two hours prior to the start of the program; limit 2 tickets per person.
For more information about ICA Reads programming and different ways to participate, see the program guide or https://www.icaboston.org/ICAreads. Copies of Ward’s book are available for purchase at the ICA Store.
Jesmyn Ward was born in Berkeley, CA in 1977. She received undergraduate and master’s degrees from Stanford University and an M.F.A. from the University of Michigan. Ward is currently an associate professor of creative writing at Tulane University. She is the author of Where the Line Bleeds and Salvage the Bones, the latter of which won the 2011 National Book Award and was a finalist for the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. Men We Reaped, won the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize for Nonfiction and was named one of the best books of 2013 by The New York Times Book Review.
Steve Locke was featured in a solo exhibition, there is no one left to blame, at the ICA in 2013 that subsequently traveled to the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit. His work has also been highlighted in exhibitions at the deCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, Montserrat College of Art, Boston Center for the Arts, and Samsøn. Locke writes the blog artandeverythingafter.com and teaches at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.
Emily Alyssa Owens
Emily Alyssa Owens received her PhD from the Department of African and African American Studies at Harvard University and is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Later this year, she will begin her post as Assistant Professor of History at Brown University. Owens is currently working on a book on the cultural history of sex and slavery, exploring the affective and economic dimensions of the lives of women of color in the 19th century who sold (or were sold for) sex.
About ICA Reads
An artful take on the book club, ICA Reads connects contemporary literature with work on view at the museum. The museum highlights one book per year, mobilizes audiences to read and share, encourages discussions in front of works of art with similar themes, and introduces the writer in a free public event. The ICA, located at 25 Harbor Shore Drive, is open Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 am — 5 pm; Thursday and Friday, 10 am — 9 pm; and Saturday and Sunday, 10 am — 5 pm. Admission is $15 adults, $13 seniors and $10 students, and free for members and children 17 and under. Free admission for families at ICA Play Dates (2 adults + children 12 and under) on last Saturday of the month. For more information, call 617-478-3100 or visit our Web site at www.icaboston.org. Follow the ICA at Facebook/ICA.Boston and Twitter.com/ICAinBoston.