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Training School For Negro Girls: Bay Area Book Festival

  • Bay Area Book Festival 1569 Solano Ave. #635 Berkeley, CA 94707 United States (map)

Ache, Rage, Rise: Portraits of Race and Gender in Short Fiction, at The Marsh Theater

with Camille Acker, Jamel Brinkley, Kali Fajardo-Anstine

Come hear three rising literary stars! From a house party in Brooklyn, to the mountains of southern Colorado, to the rapidly changing streets of the nation's capital, these story collections travel the full trajectory and vibrate with vivid prose. Jamel Brinkley ("A Lucky Man," finalist for the National Book Award), Camille Acker ("Training School for Negro Girls"), and Kali Fajardo-Anstine ("Sabrina and Corina") have written coming-of-age stories anchored by young characters who are discovering power and loss, learning the rules and how to break them.


The stories in this debut collection shatter monolithic assumptions of black womanhood.

“An exciting literary achievement by a significant emerging talent. This flawlessly executed work reinvigorates the short fiction genre.” BUST

In her debut short story collection, Camille Acker unleashes the irony and tragic comedy of respectability onto a wide-ranging cast of characters, all of whom call Washington, DC, home. A "woke" millennial tries to fight gentrification, only to learn she's part of the problem; a grade school teacher dreams of a better DC, only to take out her frustrations on her students; and a young piano player wins a competition, only to learn the prize is worthless. 

Ultimately, they are confronted with the fact that respectability does not equal freedom. Instead, they must learn to trust their own conflicted judgment and fight to create their own sense of space and self.

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Earlier Event: May 2
Arid Dreams: Seattle Art Museum
Later Event: May 24
Original Plumbing: Skylight Books