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I Sing The Body Electric: A Literary Bacchanal

  • Tucson Hop Shop 3230 North Dodge Boulevard Tucson, AZ, 85716 United States (map)

"If you can't talk about something, you can't think about something," writer Eula Biss told Krista Tippett in a recent interview. 

Join me in late February, as alumni of my classes-- writers of sex, illness, and trauma-- read together for the first time.

In the classes I teach, we write the body to call it into being: to celebrate the brightness of sex or to untangle its complication; to find the wisdom at the heart of our illness journeys or to scrutinize the way callous medical care distances us from our own bodies; to write violence against the body with beauty, to write the perpetrator into humanity, to come into new relation with the things that have broken and remade us. We speak what is unspeakable, and afterward more is possible.

Come hear these brave, funny, and insightful stories of the body, at the precise time we most need them. The reading will be hosted by Tucson Hop Shop, whose perfect sun-and-shade-spackled patio is unmatched in Tucson. There'll be cold beer, chilled wine, ciders and lemonades and sodas and artisanal snacks. (A food truck is likely, but which? Still forthcoming.) 

Readers include Sara Hubbs, Maryrose Larkin, Kali Kennedy, Shefali Milczarek-Desai, Taylor Ducklow, Lee Anne Gallaway-Mitchell, Lisa Bowden, Natalie Wardlaw, Lora Rivera, Anna Stokes, Red Samaniego, and others. As our rangey essayists may read about hot liaisons, violent relationships, and moments facing death, the event is not recommended for children.

What is a bacchanal?  In Ancient Rome, Bacchanalia were festivals to the god of wine, Bacchus, marked by intoxication and sexual rituals (some of which may have involved violence). But today we know the term bacchanal as referring to any wild revelry, and in this instance we use it to honor a celebration of the body in its full experience, gorgeous and dark, beautiful and painful. 

Credit: Colella Spaces Photography

Credit: Colella Spaces Photography