2017 Festival Schedule

A Discussion of the Ways Technology, Media and the Decline of Religion Shape America’s Rural Future
Sat, 9/16, 11:30 PM
Contois Auditorium
Bill Schubart’s latest novel, Lila & Theron chronicles rural life in the last century. The hardscrabble resilience of his characters lays bare a rural culture that has defined much of American history. But the last half-century has seen wrenching changes in our backwoods and our cities.

Technological advances like automation, and globalization have rigidified employment classes and polarized wealth, dampening growth prospects for many workers.The decline of religion and the economic hollowing-out of rural communities have isolated many rural families. The growth of material culture and the panoply of passive media entertainments have changed how we play. New understandings of race, gender, and sexuality have confused how we understand one another. Opiate addiction, chronic disease, and suicide-by-lifestyle have reached epidemic proportions. For many, narcissism and victim-hood have silenced nature’s call to resilience and persistence.

While the global well-being of earthlings has been on a steady rise, Bill will engage his audience in what changes they’ve seen in their lifetimes, what bodes well and what bodes ill for America’s rural future.

Leda Schubert Celebrates Pete Seeger
Sat, 9/16, 12:30 PM
BCA Center, LBG Room
 Join Leda Schubert to remember and celebrate the life, work and music of Pete Seeger! Leda will read from her new book, Listen: How Pete Seeger Got America Singing, lead folks in song with her froggy voice and encourage conversation.



The Power of Outrage
Sat, 9/16, 1:30 PM
BCA Center, LBG Room
What fuels writers to take on burning issues? How do they handle the political? Does writing give them refuge from despair? Shenaaz Nanji, Mary Dingee Fillmore, Daniel H. Dugas, Marc Estrin, Leda Schubert and Melissa Febos in conversation with Cora Siré.