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American Bodies: A Community Conversation | Guilford

October 9, 2023 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

A Black man, a trans woman, a fat queer writer, a visually-impaired author, a disabled writer: how does living in our various and different bodies determine how we navigate the world? How do different experiences impact our feelings of belonging in America?

Deonna Kelli Sayed explores these topics from her perspective in the solo show, American Body, Oct 12-15. To expand the discussion, she is joined on set for a pre-show discussion by Matthew Johnson (a Black poet); JT Hill (a visually-impaired White writer); Juliette Faroe (a trans White woman); Allison Kirkland (a disabled writer); and Audrey Smith (fat queer White writer) to talk about how body size, race, gender, and ability impacts how we belong in this country.

This event is free and open to all. It will run a little over an hour. American Bodies: A Community Discussion, is in partnership with Creative Greensboro. THIS EVENT TAKES PLACE IN THE STEPHEN D. HYERS THEATRE IN BOTTOM FLOOR OF THE CULTURAL CENTER.

Juliette Faroe is a trans woman who transitioned two years ago. She is a Prevention Advocate at the Triad Health Project.

James Tate Hill is the author of a memoir, Blind Man’s Bluff (W. W. Norton), a New York Times Editors’ Choice and a Washington Independent Review of Books Favorite Book of 2021. His fiction debut, AcademyGothic, won the Nilsen Literary Prize for a First Novel. His fiction and nonfiction have been published by Lit Hub, Shondaland, Salon, Poets & Writers, and Prairie Schooner, among others, and his work has been listed as Notable in three editions of The Best American Essays. Originally from West Virginia, he has lived in Greensboro since 2001.

Allison Kirkland is a writer and creative writing instructor based in Durham, NC. Her essays have placed in national competitions and in 2022 she was named an Ella Fountain Pratt Emerging Artist by the Durham Arts Council. Learn more at allisonkirkland.com.

Matthew Johnson is the author of the poetry collections, Shadow Folks and Soul Songs (Kelsay Books) and Far from New York State (New York Quarterly Press), and a forthcoming chapbook scheduled for a late 2024 release through Finishing Line Press. His poetry has appeared in Front Porch Review, The Maryland Literary Review, Northern New England Review, Roanoke Review, and elsewhere.He is the recipient of a Sundress Publications Residency and is a multiple-time Best of the Net nominee. A former sports journalist and editor, he earned his MA in English at UNC-Greensboro. He is the managing editor of The Portrait of New England and the poetry editor of The Twin Bill.

Audrey Smith (she/they) is a writer, educator, and media producer based in Greensboro, NC. They hold a Master’s degree in Secondary English Language Arts Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Nonfiction Writing from Oregon State University. Audrey was the 2022 winner of the Alex Albright Creative Nonfiction Prize, and their nonfiction writing has appeared in Hippocampus Magazine, Nat. Brut and the North Carolina Literary Review, among others. As the fat, queer offspring of a gynecologist and a Methodist minister, they’ve had plenty of experience navigating the sometimes uncomfortable, always complicated process of talking about our bodies.

Deonna Kelli Sayed is a White Muslim writer, former Southern Baptist, descended from Catawba Indians and Scott-Irish colonists who settled North Florida in the early mid 1800s. She is the playwright and performer behind American Body: The Solo Show about how bodies impact belonging in America. Learn more at www.deonnaiswriting.com


October 9, 2023
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Event Category:


Deonna Kelli Sayed


Stephen D.Hyers Theatre
200 N. Davie Street
Greensboro, North Carolina
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