Conversation with Bestselling Author Bliss Broyard Tonight at 6:30

Professor Gale Bellas Papageorge will be in conversation tonight, April 15, at 6:30 pm, with author, Bliss Broyard, about growing up in the Fairfield/Southport area and her critically acclaimed memoir, One Drop, where she discusses her father’s decision to keep his racial identity under the radar as a famous New York Times book reviewer and critic. The event is hosted by the Fairfield University Downtown Bookstore. Please tune in to the link below at the time of the event. No need for pre-registration. 

Bliss Broyard is the author of the bestselling story collection, My Father, Dancing, which was a New York Times Notable Book, and the award-winning memoir, One Drop: My Father’s Hidden Life-A Story of Race and Family Secrets, which was named a best book of the year by the Chicago Tribune and was a finalist for the Essence Literary Prize. Her stories and essays have been anthologized in It Occurs to Me That I Am America: New Stories and Art,  Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize, The Art of the Essay, and others. She has written for New York Magazine, The New York, The Guardian, The Believer, Conde Nast Traveler, Elle, “O” the Oprah Magazine, Time, and many other publications.

Anatole Paul Broyard , born, July 16, 1920 – deceased October 11, 1990, was an American writer from New Orleans. He moved to Brooklyn, with his family, as a youth. He was an acclaimed  literary critic, and book reviewer who wrote for The New York Times. In addition to his many reviews and columns, he published short stories, essays, and two books during his lifetime. His autobiographical works, Intoxicated by My Illness (1992) and Kafka Was the Rage: A Greenwich Village Memoir (1993), were published after his death. 

Several years after his death, Broyard became the center of controversy when it was revealed that he had “passed” as white as an adult. Moving to Greenwich Village, where there were other aspiring writers and artists who had moved from their pasts, he wanted to be accepted as a writer, rather than a “black writer”. 

Some friends said they always knew he had black ancestry. A Louisiana Creole of mixed-race ancestry, Broyard was criticized by some black political figures for his decisions, as he had acted as an individual during a period of increased communal political activity by African Americans. Since the late twentieth century, advocates of multiracial culture have cited Broyard as an example of someone insisting on an independent racial identity, before it was widely popular in mainstream America.’

The event can be accessed through this Facebook link: