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Tuesday, January 15, 2013 7:15 PM
Mark Taper Auditorium-Central Library
Tue, Jan 15, 7:15 PM [ALOUD]
Amy Wilentz

Farewell, Fred Voodoo: A Letter from Haiti

In conversation with Jon Wiener, author and professor of history, U.C. Irvine

Veteran journalist Wilentz, a passionate longtime observer of Haiti, reports on the uncanny resilience of the confounding country that emerged from the dust of the 2010 earthquake like a powerful spirit. She looks back and forward--at Haiti's slave plantations, revolutionary history, its totalitarian regimes and its profound creative culture. Populated with rock stars and Voodoo priests, heartbreak and magic, her brilliant storytelling brings to life a place like nowhere in the world.

Amy Wilentz is the author of The Rainy Season: Haiti Since Duvalier, Martyrs' Crossing, and I Feel Earthquakes More Often Than They Happen: Coming to California in the Age of Schwarzenegger. She is the recipient of the Whiting Writers Award, the PEN Martha Albrand Non-Fiction Award, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Award and a nominee for the National Book Critics Circle Award. She frequently writes for The New Yorker and The Nation, and currently teaches in the Literary Journalism program at U.C. Irvine. Her most recent book is Farewell, Fred Voodoo: A Letter Form Haiti.

Jon Wiener is a professor of history at the University of California Irvine, where he specializes in recent American history. He is the author of many books, including Historians in Trouble: Plagiarism, Fraud and Politics in the Ivory Tower, and Gimme Some Truth: The John Lennon FBI Files, among others. His most recent work is How We Forgot the Cold War: A Historical Journey Across America. He is a contributing editor to The Nation magazine, and hosts an afternoon drive-time radio program on KPFK-90.7 FM featuring interviews on politics and culture.

Video Excerpt from Children of Haiti by Alexandria Hammond. 

Alexandria Hammond, a documentary filmmaker based in NYC, first travelled to Haiti in 2002 to document the impact of the Hopital Sacre Coeur in Milot, the 2nd largest hospital in the country. After her experiences meeting street kids in Cap-Haitien and hearing some of their unimaginable stories of survival, she realized the importance of documenting their struggle. Hammond would return various times over the next several years, immersing herself in the culture, and would ultimately spend 2007-2010 shooting and completing Children of Haiti. The film was aired as part of the PBS film series Independent Lens in 2011, along with screenings at the Museum of Modern Art, The New York Historical Society, and various festivals around the world. This 10 minute excerpt captures both Haiti's beauty and the on-going child crisis through the eyes of a few street boys who have managed to survive. With incredible first-hand insight into their situation, the boys share dreams for themselves, and for their country. This is their call for help.

Parking for the Central Library is at the Westlawn Garage at 524 S. Flower Street. Standard garage rates apply.
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