Since it was designated by Congress in 1987, we have celebrated Women’s History Month in March. Although it could be argued that the history of women in this country is relevant every month, it gives us the collective opportunity to reflect upon and celebrate women’s essential contributions both locally and globally. Whether returning to the era of the National Woman’s Party and their efforts to secure the right to vote via a great online photo collection from the Library of Congress, or staying closer to home and attending this evening’s roundtable discussion on “Women of the Counterculture Movement in 1970s Vermont” held at the Vermont History Center in Barre, we honor the work of the women before us as we strive towards equal opportunities for all.
This year’s Vermont Humanities Council (VHC) Vermont Reads title, “Brown Girl Dreaming” by Jacqueline Woodson is yet another way to connect with Women’s History Month. A beautiful memoir written in verse about coming of age during the civil rights movement, it highlights the unique struggles and perspectives of being both female and a person of color during a critical time in our history. With VHC’s generous funding the Mad River Valley Libraries are excited to bring this program to the community with 45 copies of the book to distribute along with a variety of events, including an intergenerational book discussion held on Thursday, April 27th at 6:30pm at the Moretown Elementary School. Join your friends and neighbors to engage in the important themes and ideas of this book that are still relevant today. Students from our area schools will also be on hand to help facilitate and share the work they have been doing around the title in their classrooms. Please give a call or visit the libraries’ websites to learn more about all of our VT Reads programming.
Many of the recent books to come to the library also celebrate and share a feminine point of view. “Lucky Boy” by Shanthi Sekaran follows the stories of Solimar Castro Valdez, a recent mexican immigrant who shows up at her US cousin’s doorstep pregnant, and Kavya Reddy, a chef in her mid-thirties who is trying to conceive. The resulting interactions and decisions of the main characters create an emotionally challenging story about motherhood. And Christina Baker Kline is back with a new historical novel that illuminates the subject of one of Andrew Wyeth’s most famous paintings, “Christina’s World”. In “A Piece of the World” the author of “Orphan Train” returns to early 20th century America with a take on the life of Christina Olson, her family’s farm in Maine, and her role as the artist’s muse.
Hope to see you at the library soon!