February 2017
Save the Date! 
 
Friday, March 3 
at 7:30 p.m.
Ari Banias and Lara Mimosa Monte
Poetry Reading

Monday, March 6 
at 7 p.m.
Kate Hennessy
Reading, Q&A, and Signing

Wednesday, March 8 
at 7 p.m.
Activism Series: 

Thursday, March 9 
at 7:30 p.m.
Kelly Jensen
Reading, Conversation, and Signing

Thursday, March 16 
at 7:30 p.m.
Martha Kelly in conversation with Melanie Benjamin
Lilac Girls 
Swans of Fifth Avenue
Reading, Conversation, and Signing

Friday, March 17 
at 7:30 p.m.
Nickole Brown
Poetry Reading

Wednesday, March 22 
at 7:30 p.m.
Jeanette Hurt
Reading, Q&A, and Signing

Friday, March 24 
at 7:30 p.m.
The Conversation: On Immigration
Boris Fishman and others

Tuesday, March 28 
at 7 p.m.
Elena Passarello
Animals Strike 
Curious Poses
Reading, Q&A, and Signing

Wednesday, March 29 
at 7:30 p.m.
Jessica Teich
Reading, Q&A, and Signing

Thursday, March 30 
at 7:30 p.m.
Meredith Maran in conversation with Gina Frangello
The New Old Me: 
My Late-Life Reinvention Conversation and Signing 
 
   
 
 Family of Women Book Group 
Sunday, February 5 
at 2 p.m.
The Birth of the Pill
by Jonathan Eig
 
 Classics of Women's Literature Book Group 
Tuesday, February 7 
at 7:15 p.m.  
Foreign Affairs 
by Alison Lurie
& Selection Meeting
 
Kids First Book Group
Sunday, February 12
at 4 p.m.
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place #1:
The Mysterious Howling
by Maryrose Wood
 
Sunday, February 12
at 5 p.m.
Connect the Stars 
by Marisa De Los Santos

Sunday, February 12 
at 6:30 p.m.
Crybaby Butch
by Judith Frank
  Sunday, February 19
at 2 p.m.
Under the Udala Trees
by Chinelo Okparanta
 
Book Group  
Sunday, February 19   
at 4 p.m. 
ain't i a woman
by bell hooks  
 
Tuesday, February 21
at 7 p.m.
Hidden Figures 
by Margot Lee Shetterly
 
Discussion & Potluck
Sunday, March 19
11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Suggested Reading: 
Can't We Talk About 
  Something More Pleasant?
by Roz Chast
Dear Friends of Women & Children First,
 
Some may consider January a month for hibernation, but not this feminist bookstore! We kicked off 2017 with one packed event after another--both in the store (our Activism series!) and out in the world (the Women's March)!

If you were there with us at the Women's March on Chicago, you may have spotted our co-owner Lynn and co-founder Ann on stage announcing the elected officials to 250,000 marchers! We were so proud to be involved in one of the largest demonstrations in our nation's history. Let's keep up the momentum in the store and on the streets!



With love & Solidarity,

W&CF 
Thursday, February 2 at 7 p.m.
Panel Discussion
  
Local author Kim Brooks' article "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Mom: Is Domestic Life the Enemy of Creative Work?" was shared and re-shared all over social media when it was first published in New York Magazine in the fall of 2016. Building upon this interest, Kim has invited several writer friends whose work has addressed issues of motherhood in both fiction and  nonfiction to discuss
the tension between caretaking and creativity. This event will feature Kim Brooks, Kiki Petrosino, Kaethe Schwehn, Cristina Henriquez, Frances DePontes Peebles, Zoe Zolbrod, and Rebecca Makkai.
 
Wednesday, February 8 at 7 p.m.
 
Here's a chance to use your favorite hat, scarf, mitten, and glove patterns! 
 
After a phenomenal response to the launch of our Feminist Craft Circle in January,  we are returning for another month of "craftivism" and camaraderie benefitting  Care for Real, a local organization that distributes 100,000 lbs. of food and 11,000 articles of clothing to its clients every month. A significant percentage of Care for Real's clients are immigrants and refugees, who often arrive in Chicago unprepared for our long, and sometimes brutal, winters. 
 
This event is BYOB and BYO crafting materials for making winter gear for this wonderful organization!
 
We plan to meet again in March, when we can finish up and collect the scarves, hats, etc., that we begin making tonight. Also, we will be collecting food donations. See Care for Real's food donation guidelines HERE
 
Angel Nafis and Shira Erlichman
Friday, February 10 at 7:30 p.m.
Poetry Reading Co-Sponsored by The Poetry Center of Chicago  

The Odes for You tour is a two-woman poetry performance featuring celebrated, internationally touring poets Shira Erlichman and Angel Nafis.  Through interwoven poems, monologues, songs, and jokes, these poets engage each other and the audience in the vibrant and unstoppable song of celebration. 

Angel Nafis is an Ann Arbor, Michigan, native and Cave  Canem graduate fellow. Her work has appeared in the Rattling Wall , the BreakBeat Poets Anthology , the Rumpus , Poetry Magazine , and more. She is also the author of BlackGirl Mansion . She has represented NYC at both the National Poetry Slam and the Women of the World Poetry Slam. She is an Urban Word NYC Mentor and the founder, curator, and host of the Greenlight Poetry Salon. She earned her BA at Hunter  College and is an MFA candidate in poetry at Warren Wilson College. She currently lives in Brooklyn. 
 
Shira Erlichman is a poet, musician, and visual artist. A  three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, her work can be found in BUST , Bitch , and the Baffler , among others. She was awarded a residency by the Millay Colony and the James Merrill Fellowship by the Vermont Studio Center. As a musician she's performed her experimental pop-soul across the United States, sharing stages with TuNe-YaRdS, CocoRosie, Mirah, and Andrea Gibson. She earned her BA at Hampshire College. Her new full-length album Subtle Creature is available on iTunes and Spotify. Israeli-born and raised in Massachusetts, she now lives in Brooklyn.
Valentine's Day Edition
Saturday, February 11 at 3 p.m.
 
Coco Sho-Nell, Muffy Fishbasket, Ashley Morgan, and a very special guest return for
the wildly popular Story Time with Drag Queens! For this edition, the Queens will be reading new and classic story boo ks about love, including Corduroy by Don Freeman. This event is perfect for children ages 3 and up 
(and their grown-ups).  
Wednesday, February 15 at 7 p.m.
   
For the second event in our new Activism series, join us as we welcome Chicago Women's Health Center (CWHC) to discuss what feminist health care and health education look like! A health collective founded in 1975 and based in Uptown, CWHC works to facilitate the empowerment of women and trans people by providing access to health care and health education in a respectful environment, where people pay what they can afford. With a non-judgmental, body-positive, sex-positive, and queer-inclusive framework, CWHC creates an environment in which individuals of diverse backgrounds and experiences are able to access quality, affordable health care services and education.  CWHC emphasizes collaboration and health literacy across its services, which include gynecology, primary care, trans health services, counseling, alternative insemination, health education, acupuncture, and massage and body work. Providers affirm that clients know their bodies best; each appointment, class, and conversation is seen as an opportunity for individuals to learn more about their bodies and to explore which health care options are best for them. 

Women & Children First's Activism series showcases a different local social justice organization each month. The organization will give a presentation detailing its mission, followed by a Q&A, and an action plan of how attendees can get involved to support the featured organization. 
Juan Martinez
Thursday, February 16 at 7:30 p.m.
Book Launch Party
A READ LOCAL Event
 
Come celebrate the launch of the debut story collection by local author Juan Martinez! These are the best Americans, the worst Americans. In these stories (these cities, these people) there are labyrinths, rivers, wildernesses. Voices sound slightly  different than expected. There's humor, but it's going to hurt. These refreshing and invigorating stories of displacement, exile, and identity, and of men who find themselves confused by the presence or the absence of extraordinary women, remind the reader how big the world is.
 
Juan Martinez 's stories have been published in McSweeney's, Glimmer Train, and TriQuarterly and broadcasted on Selected Shorts. He lives in Chicago with his family and is an assistant professor of English at Northwestern University.   
Saturday, February 18 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
Kids' Activity for ages 3 and up!
 
We will provide kid-friendly coloring sheets and other art supplies, along with cookies and hot cocoa. Our
theme this month is French Impressionism and features the artwork of Karlene Bland. Come and  color with us and
learn about the Impressionists! Great for age s 2 and up. Moms are encouraged to stay and join in the class. Suggested donation: $10 per family (one parent and up to 2 kids) to cover art supplies and treats.
Wednesday, February 22 at 7 p.m.
Art Therapy Workshop: Exploring Relationships Through Image Making
  
This workshop offers an opportunity to look at relationships in a new way.  Images, like dreams, can bring new insights.  Join Barbara Fish, author of Art-Based Supervision , introduces the way therapists use imagery to deepen their understanding of their relationships with their clients.
 
Participants will then be able to make images that visually explore a relationship of their choice. Those who haven't made art since they were children, as well as more skilled artists, can explore ideas and be surprised by their own creative
expressions. There is no right or wrong way to make art. As in art therapy, artwork will not be interpreted, as each person is the authority of his or her own image. Drawing materials will be provided. 

Barbara Fish is an artist, art therapist, educator, and supervisor. She is on the faculty of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is a past president of the Illinois Art Therapy Association. 

The cost of this workshop is $10, payable by cash or check.     
Emily Robbins in conversation with Rebecca Makai
Thursday, February 23 at 7:30 p.m.
Author Conversation and Book-signing

A mesmerizing debut novel set in Syria on the cusp of unrest, A Word for Love is the story of a young American woman transformed by language, risk, war, and a startling new understanding of love.  It is said there are ninety-nine Arabic words for love. Bea, an American exchange student, travels to Syria to study them but instead becomes entwined in her host family's lives, and in particular the romance between a housemaid and policeman of different cultural and political backgrounds. As the country speeds toward unrest, Bea wonders how many secrets she can keep, and how long she can fight for a romance that does not belong to her. 

Emily Robbins has lived and worked across the Middle East and North Africa. She was a Fulbright Fellow in Syria, where she studied religion and language with a women's mosque movement and lived with the family of a leading intellectual. Robbins holds a BA from Swarthmore College and an MFA from Washington University in St. Louis and in 2016 she received a second Fulbright, to study in Jordan. She lives in Chicago and Brownsville, Texas. 

For this event, Emily will be in conversation with Rebecca Makkai. Makkai is the author of two novels, The Hundred-Year House and The Borrower, and the story collection Music for Wartime. Her work has appeared in Harper's, McSweeney's, Iowa Review, Best American Nonrequired Reading, and numerous volumes of Best American Short Stories, among others and has aired on This American Life. She lives outside Chicago  with her husband and two daughters.
The Conversation: Civil Disobedience
Tuesday, February 28 at 7 p.m.
 
Each month, we bring together a group of writers, artists, and politicians together to talk about a n issue of political, social, or cultural importance. These are not readings, but passionate conversations that will include the audience. This month The Conversation's theme is Civil Disobedience. This edition will feature representatives from the ACLU, the labor movement, and the action-oriented group Lifted Voices. 

Each Conversation ends with a takeaway (kind of like optional homework--an article to re ad, an organization to engage with, a movie to watch, a protest to attend). Even better: after the event, the conversation continues at a nearby bar, gallery, or restaurant, where we eat, drink, argue, and organize. These events a
re free and open to all, but donations for a local nonprofit will be collected at the afterparty.  The location of our February afterparty will be announced shortly! Stay connected to our Facebook page for details.  
Donna Seaman
Wednesday, March 1 at 7 p.m.
Book Celebration with Live Music and Refreshments
Please Note: This event will be held at the Swedish American Museum, 5211 N. Clark St.

Join us for a reading, Q&A, and signing for Donna Seaman's new book, Identity Unknown. This event will include live music and refreshments. Who hasn't wondered where--aside from Georgia O'Keeffe and Frida Kahlo--all the women artists are? In many art books, they've summarily dismissed in the captions of group photographs with the phrase "identity unknown," while each male is named.  Donna Seaman brings to dazzling life seven of these forgotten artists, all among the best of their day: Gertrude Abercrombie, Joan Brown, Ree Morton, Lois Mailou Jones, Lenore Tawney, Christina Ramberg, and Louise Nevelson. In brilliant, compassionate prose, Seaman reveals what drove them, how they worked, and how they were perceived by others in a world where women were  assumed to be the subjects--not the makers--of art. Featuring stunning examples of the artists' work, Identity Unknown speaks to all women about their neglected place in history and the challenges they face to be taken seriously. 

Donna Seaman has degrees in the fine arts and English. An editor at Booklist, she also reviews books for the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, among others. She has published in TriQuarterly and Creative Nonfiction. Seaman created, hosted, and produced Open Books, a radio program about outstanding books and writers  and the art of reading. She lives in Chicago.
Thursday, March 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Poetry Reading 
 
Vita E. Cleveland and Kayla Weeden will share poems consecutively, creating a single timeline of their two very separate lives. The poems cover childhood and high school years, working toward the present where their paths have, finally, converged. 

V ita E. Cleveland (she/they), a Black trans poet and percussionist from Cleveland, Ohio, writes and performs poetry with an emphasis on activism as "disruptive narrative."  She is currently based in Chicago and works with the Chicago BTGNC Collective and Black Lives Matter Chicago. She is one half of the administrative team for awQward, the first talent agency to exclusively uplift the work of trans and queer artists of color. She has recently joined the Chicago Latinx punk band, Cabrona, as the drummer and percussionist. 
 
Kayla Weeden (she/her) is a passionate, goofy, and lovable queer poet in her junior year at DePaul University. Her love of poetry was kickstarted in 8th grade when her English teacher assigned a poetry project to her class. Since then, she has become the president of DePaul's Presenters of Enlightenment Through Spoken-Word Club and the president of Spectrum DePaul, which is dedicated to providing queer students at DePaul a safe and fun place to make friends that grow into family. 
Kate Hennessy
Monday, March 6 at 7 p.m.
Reading, Q&A, and Signing

In this biography, the life and work of Dorothy Day--the iconic, celebrated, and controversial Catholic--is told with illuminating detail by her granddaughter, Kate Hennessy. Day was a prominent writer, social activist, and co-founder of a movement dedicated to serving the poor. Her life has been revealed through her own writings as well as the work of historians, theologians, and academics. What has been missing until now is a more personal account. This book challenges ideas of plaster saints, detailing Day's life before her conversion--having an abortion and a child out of wedlock--and after her conversion, when she was both a servant and a rigorous  challenger of the Church. While tenderly rendered, Hennessy's account will show her as driven to do good but dogmatic, loving but judgmental, in particular toward her only daughter, Tamar. An undisputed radical heroine, called a saint for the Occupy era by the New Yorker, Day's story unfolds against a backdrop of New York City from the 1910s to the 1980s. 

Kate Hennessy is a writer whose recent work includes a collaboration with the photographer Vivian Cherry called Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker: The Miracle of Our Continuance and pieces included in Best American Travel Writing. After calling both Vermont and New York City home, Kate now lives in the west of Ireland with her husband.
Kelly Jensen and Mikki Kendal
Thursday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m.
Reading, Conversation, and Signing
 
Come meet the editor of this exciting new anthology. In Here We Are, forty-four writers, dancers, actors, and artists contribute essays, lists, poems, comics, and illustrations about everything from body positivity to romance, gender identity, intersectionality, and the greatest girl friendships in fiction. Together, they share diverse perspectives on and insights into what feminism means 
and what it looks like now. 

Kelly Jensen is a former librarian-turned-editor for Book Riot and Stacked. She's the author of It Happens: A Guide to Contemporary Realistic Fiction for the YA Reader. She loves black licorice and debating genre. 
 
Mikki Kendall is a writer, diversity consultant, and
"occasional feminist" who talks a lot about
intersectionality, policing, gender, sexual assault, and other current events. Her nonfiction can be found at the Guardian , the Washington Post , Ebony , xoJane , Bustle , Islamic Monthly , and a host of other sites. Her media appearances include BBC, NPR, Al Jazeera , WBEZ, and Showtime.
Roxane Gay 
in conversation with Britt Julious
Wednesday, March 15 at 7 p.m.
Conversation and Signing
Please Note: This event will be held at Senn High School Auditorium (5900 N. Glenwood). 
Tickets are available HERE through Brown Paper Tickets.
 
Award-winning author Roxane Gay will discuss her new story collection, Difficult Women, with local writer Britt Julious. The conversation will be followed by an audience Q&A and a book-signing. Powerhouse talent Roxane Gay burst onto the scene with An Untamed State and the New York Times best-selling essay collection Bad Feminist. In  Difficult Women, Gay offers stories of rare force and beauty, of hardscrabble lives, passionate loves, and quirky and vexed human connection. Gay delivers a wry, beautiful, haunting vision of modern America. 

Roxane Gay is the author of the novel An Untamed State, which was a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Fiction; the essay collection Bad Feminist; and Ayiti, a multi-genre collection. She is at  work on a memoir, Hunger , and a comic book in Marvel's Black Panther series. She is a recipient of the PEN Center USA Freedom to Write Award, among other honors. She splits her time between Indiana and Los Angeles.
 
Britt Julious is a journalist, essayist and storyteller. She is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune and weekend editor at THUMP. She frequently contributes to Esquire, Vice, and Pitchfork, a mong others. She also hosts the Back Talk , a storytelling podcast featuring young women of color. She lives in Chicago. 

PLEASE NOTE: Both ticket options include a copy of Difficult Women. Attendees can pick up their copy of the book until Tuesday, March 14, 2017 at Women & Children First (5233 N. Clark St.). But due to high demand for this book, please call the store at 773-769-9299 to make sure we have copies on hand. If you cannot pick up your book in advance, you can do so on the night of the event at the door of the venue, Senn High School Auditorium. 
Women & Children First - wcfbooks@gmail.com
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