Marquee Conference Events at SSSL 2022

We have a fantastic lineup of marquee events this year, and we hope you’ll join us! Tickets for all events are included with SSSL 2022 registration. Just select which tickets you want when you register!

Sunday, June 26th: Opening Night Plenary

Monday, June 27th: Evening Double Feature

Film Screening and Filmmaker Talkback (Hyatt Avalon I & Whova):

  • 7:30 – 8:00pm: All Saints
  • 8:00 – 9:00pm: Searching for Sequoyah
  • 9:00 – 9:30pm: Talkback with Filmmakers

Tuesday, June 28th: Closing Night Events

Three Closing Night Events hosted at Georgia State University’s CMII (25 Park Place, Atlanta) & Whova:

Wednesday, June 29th: SSSL Organizational Meeting & Lunch

Biennial organizational meeting facilitated by 2020-2022 SSSL President Gina Caison and 2022-2024 SSSL President-Elect Sherita Johnson. Hosted at the Hyatt Avalon Ballroom & Whova

Opening Night Flyer by Stephanie Rountree, Ph.D.

Joy Harjo, LeAnne Howe, and Jennifer Foerster: Opening Night Plenary

Sunday Evening: June 26, 2022

Hyatt Avalon Ballroom and Whova at 6:30pm

SSSL 2022’s Opening Night Plenary will feature U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo, Eidson Distinguished Professor LeAnne Howe, and poet Jennifer Foerster. Together, Harjo, Howe, and Foerster are the editors of the recent When the Light of the World Was Subdued, Our Songs Came Through: A Norton Anthology of Native Nations Poetry.

Due to the pandemic, this will be the first time that these three incredible poets and editors will appear together in person to read and talk about their work on this landmark anthology. We are thrilled that SSSL will have the opportunity to hear from them on Mvskoke homelands. Harjo, Howe, and Foerster have each produced important works of literature, including poetry collections, plays, novels, memoirs, and collected essays. We hope that you will join us in welcoming these three incredible Native women writers to SSSL for our 2022 biennial conference.

  • 6:30 – 7:30pm (Hyatt & Whova): Roundtable discussion with Joy Harjo, LeAnne Howe, and Jennifer Foerster
  • 7:30 – 8:30pm (Hyatt): Book Signing with Plenary Speakers & Opening Night Reception

SSSL 2022 Monday Night Double Feature by Stephanie Rountree, Ph.D.

Double Feature: Screening & Talkback of All Saints and Searching for Sequoyah

Monday Evening: June 27, 2022

SSSL 2022’s Monday Night Event will feature back-to-back screenings of two films followed by a Q&A session with filmmakers.

  • 7:30 – 8:00pm (Hyatt Avalon I & Whova): Screening of All Saints: La Toussaint in Lacombe, Louisiana
  • 8:00 – 9:00pm (Hyatt Avalon I & Whova): Screening of Searching for Sequoyah
  • 9:00 – 9:30pm (Hyatt Avalon I & Whova): Talkback featuring:
    • All Saints: Keith Cartwright, Dolores Flores-Silva, Jillian Smith, and Ruby DuCré-Gethers 
    • Searching for Sequoyah: LeAnne Howe

All Saints: La Toussaint in Lacombe, Louisiana

Hyatt Avalon I and Whova at 7:30pm

All Saints: La Toussaint in Lacombe, Louisiana, is narrated by residents and descendants of Lacombe (in St. Tammany Parish) as they commemorate All Saints Day by cleaning and lighting the graves in Williams and Ducre cemeteries. The families’ steady annual assertion—that the lives and resting places of their departed loved ones matter—presents an intergenerational act of self-love and community that this film’s narrators insist on maintaining. Against pressures of catastrophic storm, land dispossession, economic hard times, racism, and high-velocity consumerism, Lacombe families valorize life through their care in honoring lives gone before them. This blessing of the graves on November 1st is a rite shared across the Gulf, well known as Todos Santos or the Days of the Dead in Mexico. All Saints illuminates this practice in a community of Afro-Creole, French, and Choctaw roots along Bayou Lacombe, as we collaborate with residents whose words and actions share something of real value.

  • Talkback Speakers: Filmmakers Keith Cartwright, Dolores Flores-Silva, and Jillian Smith, along with Lacombe resident Ruby DuCré-Gethers 

Searching for Sequoyah

Hyatt Avalon I and Whova at 8:00pm

“Searching for Sequoyah” chronicles the life and accomplishments of the legendary 19th century Cherokee visionary, Sequoyah (George Guess), through the oral stories of five modern day Sequoyah descendants. While much is known about Sequoyah’s Cherokee writing system or syllabary, very little is known about the man himself. How did this illiterate Cherokee invent a writing system that transformed the future of his people? From Tuskegee, Tennessee to Zaragoza, Mexico, “Searching for Sequoyah” takes viewers on a journey retracing his final quest to reunite his fellow Cherokees in Mexico, the mystery surrounding his death, and the legacy he left behind.

  • Talkback Speaker: Producer and Writer LeAnne Howe (Choctaw Nation)

Closing Night Events at Georgia State University’s CMII

Tuesday Evening: June 28, 2022

SSSL 2022’s Tuesday Night Event will be held at Georgia State University’s Creative Media Industries Institute (CMII) and will feature three Marquee Events

  • 5:00 – 6:20pm (GSU’s CMII & Whova): Reading Atlanta: A Presidential Roundtable in Partnership with Studies in the Literary Imagination, featuring Matthew Dischinger, Elizabeth Rodriguez Fielder, Margaret T. (“Molly”) McGehee, Jennie Lightweis-Goff, Shari L. Arnold, and Eric Solomon
  • 6:20 – 7:30pm (GSU’s CMII & Whova): Closing Night Reception and Atlanta Mapping Lab Exhibit
  • 7:30 – 8:30pm (GSU’s CMII & Whova): A Conversation with Jericho Brown

Reading Atlanta Tuesday Roundtable by Stephanie Rountree, Ph.D.

Reading Atlanta: A Presidential Roundtable in Partnership with Studies in the Literary Imagination

GSU’s CMII and Whova at 5:00pm

This year’s SSSL Presidential Roundtable features contributors to the 2022 “Atlanta” special issue of SLI: Studies in the Literary Imagination. Structured as a “lightning” roundtable, “Reading Atlanta,” brings together a variety of approaches to Atlanta’s literature from a range of scholar-contributors. Elizabeth Rodriguez Fielder reads Toni Cade Bambara as a documentarian of Black women’s activism in the South. Focusing on how Those Bones Are Not My Child (1999) represents activism, Rodriguez Fielder argues that the Black women protagonists contend with the mental strain of activism, and their grief becomes an integral part of how they connect with and bring people together. Molly McGeehee will explore the ways in which Anne Rivers Siddons used the horror genre to critique her social and spatial surroundings in white, elite Buckhead. Jennie Lightweis-Goff demonstrates that Margaret Mitchell’s intra-war representation of resurgent Atlanta stands in contrast to that of dying coastal cities. This representation reveals the prehistory of the Sunbelt and “New” Souths, spatio-ideological formations organized in opposition to Old Southern cities, which needed to be buried in order to produce Atlanta’s vitality. Shari Arnold argues that Tayari Jones’s Leaving Atlanta (2002) speaks through children to explore how Black families address power dynamics / positionality when addressing crises—ultimately reexamining (possibly calling into question) the legacy embodied in “Black Mecca.” Finally, Eric Solomon explores the dual and different experiences of Donald Windham and Tennessee Williams to offer a theory of queer Atlanta through which each man’s view serve as one entry along a complicated continuum.

  • Matthew Dischinger, Georgia State University (Moderator)
  • Elizabeth Rodriguez Fielder, University of Iowa
  • Margaret T. (“Molly”) McGehee, Oxford College of Emory University
  • Jennie Lightweis-Goff, University of Mississippi
  • Shari L. Arnold, Georgia State University
  • Eric Solomon, Oxford College of Emory University

Mapping Atlanta Exhibit – Closing Night by Stephanie Rountree, Ph.D.

Mapping Atlanta Project Lab: Exhibit and Reception

Reception and In-Person Exhibit: GSU’s CMII at 6:20pm

Links to Mapping Projects Available on Whova

During SSSL’s Closing Night Reception, we welcome attendees to explore a digital exhibit of GSU’s “Mapping Atlanta” Project Lab, which works with faculty, the Library, and outside organizations on public-facing mapping projects, most with a focus on Atlanta. Organized by Mapping Atlanta Director Brennan Collins (GSU), this exhibit will feature three of the Lab’s ongoing digital mapping projects.

The Rap Map: Locating Hip Hop Atlanta

  • Brennan Collins , Georgia State University

“The Rap Map” focuses on Atlanta communities and explore the intersections between data visualization and storytelling. Commenting on the fact that the hip hop trio Migos came from the suburbs of Atlanta, Quavo in a 2017 Fader interview explains “If we came out of there, we wanted to make sure we screamed that to the fullest and put it on the map. It’s not like a part of Atlanta, but we made it a part of Atlanta.” Using the platform, the Rap Map locates the lyrics of Atlanta hip hop artists to create a map of the city based on narratives from historically marginalized communities rather than the traditional maps created by those in positions of power. Initially started by a Political Science grad student at GSU, the project now includes a growing number of undergraduates close reading an artist’s body of work for locations. Students are also researching where artists went to school, own businesses, and are doing philanthropic work. We are collecting more official GIS data sets as well, like police zones, census information, and city resources. As our data grows, we are working on ways to tell stories through various mapping platforms. 

Krog Codex: Archiving the Ephemeral

  • Curt Jackson, Georgia State University

“Krog Codex” focuses on Atlanta communities and explore the intersections between data visualization and storytelling. The Krog Street Tunnel is one of Atlanta’s premiere destinations for street art, political communication, and a community bulletin board. For decades, artists have added and subtracted new paintings, messages, and designs to its walls, effectively creating a rapidly changing archive of local cultural concerns. The tunnel and the walls connected to it on Dekalb Avenue and Wylie Street comprise a single living dynamic work of art that is a cultural center of Cabbagetown and Atlanta. As such, it is important to not only examine the art but also the creatives who give the tunnel life. Our project archives the constantly changing art of Krog Tunnel through 3d scans, 360 capture, and photography, along with research into the history of the tunnel and interviews with artists and community members.

“South-Asian Restaurants in Metro Atlanta: Locating Culture Through Taste”

  • Abhik Banerjee , Georgia State University
  • Yeshi Pelzom Pradhan, Georgia State University

“South-Asian Restaurants in Metro Atlanta” focuses on Atlanta communities and explore the intersections between data visualization and storytelling. Food being a significant component of culture, it has always been contingent on geography, climate, resources, practices, and the natural and acquired tastes of people living in specific regions. Due to its originality, Asian food and cooking styles have had a tremendous influence around the world. In the last century, the migration of people from South Asia due to geopolitical and economic reasons has created small yet influential immigrant communities and centers in America. Consequently, South-Asian restaurants have mushroomed in both downtowns and suburbs of big cities as viable business enterprise. Using the platform, our project creates a restaurant map of the city that detects the influence of South-Asian food and cuisine in the Atlanta metropolitan area. We examine official databases to archive general information regarding these restaurants and investigate articles/blogs/vlogs to analyze their impact on American food culture.

Jericho Brown Closing Night by Stephanie Rountree, Ph.D.

Closing Night: A Conversation with Jericho Brown

GSU’s CMII and Whova at 7:30pm

The final SSSL 2022 Closing Night event features 2020 Pulitzer Prize winning poet Jericho Brown, who is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Brown’s first book, Please (2008), won the American Book Award. His second book, The New Testament (2014), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was named one of the best of the year by Library Journal, Coldfront, and the Academy of American Poets. He is also the author of the collection The Tradition (2019), which was a finalist for the 2019 National Book Award and the winner of the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. His poems have appeared in Buzzfeed, The Nation, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The New Republic, Time, and The Pushcart Prize Anthology, and several volumes of The Best American Poetry anthologies. He is the Charles Howard Candler Professor of Creative Writing and the Director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University in Atlanta.