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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

One Book Project brings powerful programming to Kern – The Bakersfield Californian

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Updated: October 22, 2022 @ 8:46 am
“A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier is the primary title for this year’s One Book Project, which is going on now with events at Cal State Bakersfield, Bakersfield College and local libraries.
The picture book “All Are Welcome” by Alexandra Penfold is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The graphic novel “March: Book Three (1940-2020)” by John Lewis is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The adult fiction work “What’s Mine and Yours” by Naima Coster is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The young adult fiction work “Piecing Me Together” by Renee Watson is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.

“A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier is the primary title for this year’s One Book Project, which is going on now with events at Cal State Bakersfield, Bakersfield College and local libraries.
The picture book “All Are Welcome” by Alexandra Penfold is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The graphic novel “March: Book Three (1940-2020)” by John Lewis is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The adult fiction work “What’s Mine and Yours” by Naima Coster is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
The young adult fiction work “Piecing Me Together” by Renee Watson is a companion title for this year’s One Book Project, a communitywide read with programming based on the primary title’s major themes. This year’s selection is “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
For 21 years, the One Book Project has brought the community together not only to read a particular book, but also to explore the themes and issues relevant to the work.
This year is no different, with events that began last month inspired by Carlotta Walls LaNier’s “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School.”
The author, working with former Washington Post reporter/editor Lisa Frazier Page, recounted her experience as a 14-year-old student, one of the “Little Rock Nine,” who were involved in the desegregation of Little Rock Central High School in 1957.
Lynne Kemmer, The One Book Project county coordinator, described it as a moving work.
“Her story is one of tremendous courage. … As the youngest member of the ‘Little Rock Nine,’ she details her experiences being integrated into an all-white high school and how she became a writer and pushed through that experience.”
The book selection, which is headed up by a committee led by One Book partner Cal State Bakersfield, is driven by what will have relevance for local students and the community at large.
Last year, the focus was on immigration and assimilation with “A Dream Called Home” by Reyna Grande.
“A big part of that selection is determined by the current climate, and taps into what is going on in our community,” Kemmer said. “It’s always timely and this is most definitely the case this year. They select a book that is going to drive engagement with the library and our partners.”
Inspired by “A Mighty Long Way,” this year’s events have centered around the themes of civil rights, tolerance, courage, diversity and acceptance, especially as they pertain to those living in Kern County.
Remaining events will be split between Beale Memorial Library and Cal State Bakersfield including an evening with LaNier on Oct. 27 at CSUB’s Icardo Center.
Kemmer said the library knows the importance of making the community aware of these panel discussions.
“The library is honored to be able to host the people participating in these panels. They all have expert experience with the topics being discussed. These people are participating and donating their time because these topics are important to discuss,” she said.
“We want to raise up the voices of the unheard through the One Book project and to promote conversations, sometimes difficult conversations, that can bring about change.”
Kemmer said that since Kern County has often been depicted as an intolerant community in the past, a goal for One Book this year is to show that residents are open to having these discussions and finding ways to support all communities regardless of race.
“We at the library want to support changing that perception and supporting all of our community members.”
Next up is the “Redistricting and Redlining Effects on BIPOC Communities” Thursday in Beale’s auditorium, 701 Truxtun Ave.
The panel discussion led by CSUB master’s student Eileen Diaz will look at the redistricting process, research and practice of redlining and the effect on Kern’s BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) communities.
Panelists include Donato Cruz, who will discuss his masters thesis “America’s Newest City: 1950s Bakersfield and the Making of the Modern Suburban Segregated Landscape”; demographer/statistician Jesus Garcia, who drew the proposal for the Kern Equitable Maps Coalition; Sophia Garcia, who holds a geographic information systems certificate from CSUB; Harveen Kaur, community organizer of Jakara Movement; educational and political consultant Lori Pesante; and Traco Matthews, chief program officer for Community Action Partnership of Kern.
On Oct. 26, CSUB’s Walter Stiern Library will host “The Sound of Something Better — Legacy of Racial Injustice in Bakersfield.” Moderated by Donato Cruz, archives specialist at the library, the discussion will delve into topics pertaining to racial inequalities, housing and education discrimination in Bakersfield and surrounding communities.
Panelists include Carolyn Lane, a lecturer in the Department of Child, Adolescent, and Family Studies and doctor of education candidate in CSUB’s Doctoral Program of Educational Leadership; and Eileen Díaz, a graduate research assistant in archives and graduate student in the Department of History.
LaNier will head to CSUB’s Icardo Center the next day for a visit and book signing for “An Evening with Carlotta Walls LaNier.”
The event is presented by the CSUB Office of the Provost, CSUB AIMS Program, Kern Council of Teachers of English, CSUB Department of English and Sigma Tau Delta.
The Nov. 3 talk “Generational and Modern-Day Racial Trauma” at Beale’s auditorium is co-hosted and sponsored by Gridstone Inc.
This discussion of the historical, generational and modern-day traumas suffered by the Black community and its members will be led by Gerald L. Gridiron, Gridstone COO, community advocate and math and computer information systems professor at Mohave Community College.
Panelists include Darius G. Riggins, director of university outreach at CSUB, ordained itinerant elder in the African Methodist Episcopal Church and part of the ministerial staff at CAIN AME Church; Dr. Nakysha Gridiron-Cummings, a professor of psychology and sociology from Cerro Coso Community College; Andre Ponder, superintendent of Mineral County School District in Hawthorne, Nev.; Dr. Niesha Davis, a licensed clinical social worker, CEO of Life Connections and founder and CEO of YWRAP (Young Women Reaching Accomplishable Places); and educational and political consultant Channel Powe.
Concluding the One Book programming is the panel “Journey to CSUB: Stories of Racism, Discrimination, Courage, and the Civil Rights Movement” on Nov. 7 at CSUB’s Stiern Library, hosted by the Public History Institute and CSUB’s Historical Research Center.
History professor Kiran Garcha will discuss the historical context for the 1957 integration of Central High School in Little Rock, Ark., and the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement.
Panel members will include Dr. Horace Mitchell, CSUB president emeritus; Dr. Soraya Coley, former CSUB provost and current president of Cal Poly Pomona; and Dr. Thomas Wallace, CSUB’s vice president for student affairs.
Following the panel will be the presentation “Higher Education in the Post-Civil Rights Era: Black Student Experiences at CSUB” by Dr. Rhonda Dugan, moderated by Curt Asher, former dean of the Walter W. Stiern Library.
Stefani Dias can be reached at 661-395-7488. Follow her on Twitter at @realstefanidias.
Books
All of this year’s One Book events are based on themes inspired by “A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School” by Carlotta Walls LaNier.
Along with this primary title, the project is highlighting the following companion works, which can be considered alongside “Way” for those at all reading levels.
Picture book: “All Are Welcome” by Alexandra Penfold
Children’s nonfiction: “The History of the Civil Rights Movement: A History Book for New Readers” by Shadae Mallory
Young adult fiction: “Piecing Me Together” by Renee Watson
Young adult poetry: “Ain’t Burned All The Bright” by Jason Reynolds
Adult fiction: “What’s Mine and Yours: A Novel “by Naima Coster
Graphic novel: “March: Book Three (1940-2020)” by John Lewis
Events
Thursday: “Redistricting and Redlining Effects on BIPOC Communities,” a panel discussion about the redistricting process, research, and practice of redlining and the effect on BIPOC communities in Kern County. 4 to 6 p.m., Beale Memorial Library Auditorium, 701 Truxtun Ave.
Oct. 26: “The Sound of Something Better — A Legacy of Racial Injustice in Bakersfield,” a panel discussion with topics pertaining to racial inequalities, housing and education discrimination in Bakersfield and surrounding communities. 4 to 5 p.m., Dezember Reading Room in the Walter Stiern Library at CSUB, 9001 Stockdale Highway
Oct. 27: An Evening with Carlotta Walls LaNier, visit and book signing with the author. 7 p.m., Icardo Center at CSUB, 9001 Stockdale Highway.
Nov. 3: “Generational and Modern-Day Racial Trauma” a discussion where panelists will discuss the historical, generational and modern-day traumas suffered by the Black community and its members. 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Beale Memorial Library Auditorium.
Nov. 7: “Journey to CSUB: Stories of Racism, Discrimination, Courage, and the Civil Rights Movement,” panel discussion, presentation and Q&A. 6:30 to 8 p.m., Dezember Reading Room in the Walter Stiern Library at CSUB
More information
kclonebook.org
Positive Cases Among Kern Residents: 291,206
Deaths: 2,561
Recovered and Presumed Recovered Residents: 286,030
Percentage of all cases that are unvaccinated: 72.25
Percentage of all hospitalizations that are unvaccinated: 83.19
Source: Kern County Public Health Services Department
Updated: 10/20/22
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