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University Forum: Mississippi Authors: Jesmyn Ward and Kiese Laymon

Jesmyn Ward is the only woman and only Black American to win the National Book Award for Fiction twice. She is the author of five books, including the novels Salvage the Bones and Sing, Unburied, Singa collection of essays and poetry, The Fire This Time; and an autobiography, The Men We Reaped. At the age of three she moved to DeLisle, Mississippi, on the Gulf Coast with her family and Mississippi has played a prominent role in her writing. 

Kiese Laymon is a Mississippi native. He has written a satirical novel, Long Division, and two memoirs, including Heavy, an account of his troubled relationship with his mother that won the 2019 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction. Both Ward and Laymon teach. Jesmyn Ward is an associate professor of English at Tulane University and Kiese Laymon is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi. 

Forum is excited to present a conversation between two of Mississippi’s most well-known and respected authors followed by audience questions. This event is co-sponsored by the McNair Scholars Program with generous support from the Graduate School and the College of Arts and Sciences.

Dial-In Information

Zoom webinar and login information will be posted before the event.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 6:30pm

Virtual Event
Event Type

Concerts and Performances, Lectures and Presentations

Target Audience

General Public


Academic, Arts & Culture, Humanities


University Forum



Free and open to the public

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