The Gathering 2014 – On Edge

On Edge

image by Dave Porter

At the 2014 Gathering we will explore fragile margins: unstable areas where habitats meet and new species emerge; national boundaries where conflicts arise and cultures converge; volatile areas where tectonic plates collide and give rise to mountains and continents. We will examine our own creative edginess – where new ideas are born.

Presenters

Jacquelyn Mitchard (3) (170x212)Jacquelyn Mitchard is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty works of fiction for adults and young people. USA Today called her first novel, The Deep End of the Ocean, “one of the most influential books of the past twenty-five years.” The award-winning novel was chosen as the first novel to be read by the book club made famous by Oprah Winfrey. It was later adapted as a feature film produced by and starring Michelle Pfeiffer. Jacquelyn Mitchard is the editor-in-chief of the new Young Adult imprint Merit Press, and her essays have been widely anthologized. She lives in Massachusetts with her family.

jacquelynmitchard.com

Presentation:
The Muse in the Bottle: A Discussion of the American Mythos of Artistry and Alcoholism.

 Sandy-TolanSandy Tolan, teacher, journalist, and radio producer, is the author of The Lemon Tree: An Arab, A Jew, and the Heart of the Middle East. The Washington Post called the book “extraordinary” and selected it among their top nonfiction titles for 2006; the Christian Science Monitor wrote, “No novel could be more compelling” and proclaimed, “It will be one of the best nonfiction books you will read this year.” Sandy has reported from more than 30 countries, especially in the Middle East, Latin America, the Balkans, and Eastern Europe. As co-founder of Homelands Productions, he has produced hundreds of documentaries and features for public radio. He has written for more than 40 newspapers and magazines.  He is associate professor at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at University of Southern California. sandytolan.com

Presentation:
Searching for Hope in Israel/Palestine

sonia-sanchezSonia Sanchez is a poet, mother, professor, and international lecturer on Black culture, literature, and racial justice. She is the author of more than sixteen books. She won the American Book Award for her poetry collection Homegirls and Handgrenades. Sonia Sanchez has lectured at over 500 universities and colleges in the United States and has traveled extensively, reading her poetry in Africa, Cuba, England, the Caribbean, Australia, Europe, Nicaragua, the People’s Republic of China, Norway, and Canada. She was the first Presidential Fellow at Temple University, and she held the Laura Carnell Chair in English at Temple University. Her many awards include the Harper Lee Award (2004), Alabama Distinguished Writer, the National Visionary Leadership Award (2006), and Leeway Foundation Transformational Award (2005). soniasanchez.net

Presentation:
An Evening with Sonia Sanchez

victor-navaskyVictor Navasky was editor of The Nation from 1978 to 1995, and editorial director from 1995 to 2005. Currently publisher emeritus, he served as a fellow at the Institute of Politics at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and later as a senior fellow at the Freedom Forum Media Studies Center at Columbia University. Before joining The Nation he was an editor at The New York Times Magazine and wrote a monthly column about the publishing business (In Cold Print) for the New York Times Book Review. He is the author of Kennedy Justice, the American Book Award winner Naming Names, A Matter of Opinion, and most recently, The Art of Controversy. Victorsnavasky.com

Presentation:
The Political Cartoon:  Why This “Silly,” “Trivial,” “Irrelevant,” “Not Serious,” Medium Matters

ian-saginorIan Saginor is an Assistant Professor of Geosciences at Keystone College. He earned his Ph.D. at Rutgers University, where he studied the evolution of volcanic systems through time. Working throughout Central America as well as the Lesser Antilles island chain, he conducts his research using a technique known as argon, which helps him understand the ways that volcanoes change throughout their life cycle. Since 2009, he has operated Keystone’s seismic station, which detects energy from earthquakes from all over the world. He also leads a field course to Costa Rica each year to introduce students to the geology and diverse ecology of the region. He writes an Earth Science blog (www.volcanoclast.com) and you can also follow him on Twitter (@volcanoclast).

Presentation:
Converging Worlds: At the intersection of Volcanoes and Culture

 

Judine SomervilleJudine Somerville is a dancer, actress and teacher whose performances have energized film, television, and Broadway. Currently she is on the boards as assistant choreographer to Otis Sallid on the New Fox Searchlight movie musical Black Nativity starring Forest Whitaker, Angela Basset, Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige and introducing Jacob Lattimore. On Broadway she was part of the original cast and singing trio sensation The Dynamites in the Tony Award-winning musical Hairspray. Other Broadway credits include: On the Town, The Life, Crazy for You, and Late Nite Comic. Her national tours have included Barry Manilow’s Copacabana and Jekyll and Hyde. Her television appearances include MTV’s Made, The Today Show, The View, Judge Hatchett, Good Morning America, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Rosie O’Donnell Show, and others. While performing in Hairspray she was awarded the prestigious Gypsy Robe. She is the first dancer to receive the F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship. She lives in New York and Mt. Pocono, Pennsylvania. justjudine.co

Presentation:
From Bed Stuy to Broadway, the Poconos, and Beyond

Judine will perform a dance solo and speak about her journey from humble beginnings to bright horizons. She will show footage from her performances and talk about what has inspired her in dance and in life.

David W. Porter and Jean Luc ‘Djaloki’ Dessables

dave-porterDavid W. Porter, Professor of Fine Art at Keystone College, is a professional artist in publication design, having worked for magazines, newspapers, a research organization, as well as in other design professions, in a range of positions from production artist to creative coordinator. He travels to Haiti frequently to develop study abroad experiences for students. He earned a BFA in Design and Illustration from Tyler School of Art of Temple University, an MA in Art Therapy from Marywood University, and studied graduate level painting at California State University.

 

Djaloki smiling fuzzy faceRev. Jean Luc “Djalòki” Dessables is an ordained Interfaith Minister, an initiated Vodou priest, a cross-cultural consultant and facilitator, and an engineer. His life call is to contribute to a sustainable diverse global society showing reverence for the mystery of life and valuing inclusive excellence and collective intelligence among peoples and institutions. He is founder and President of Konesans Consulting; co-founder of Wisdom Circle Ministries; co-founder and Vice-President of the “N a Sonje” Foundation in Ayiti (the Creole name of Haiti), which aims at healing the historical wounds between the peoples of Africa, Europe and the Americas. His work has been published in the Black Arts Quarterly of Stanford University. Djaloki is a citizen of Ayiti.

Presentation:
At and Beyond the Edge: Paradigm Clashes and Reconciliation

 

donna-fetzkoDonna Fetzko offers yoga classes for all levels. As an instructor certified through Yoga Alliance and trained in the Yogafit style, a nutritionist, and a health educator she believes in a holistic approach to wellness. She has been bringing the benefits of yoga to area schools, businesses, and the community at large for over five years.

Presentation:

Each Day is a Gift to Experience, Embrace, Enjoy
Begin the day focused and balanced, ready for self-discovery with a morning yoga practice. Yoga promotes physical, mental, and spiritual health, and it can be done by everyone. Daily practice presented in the user-friendly, demystified, safe, and effective Yogafit style. Come prepared with comfortable clothes, a mat, towel or blanket, and water.

Book Discussion

Mari FlynnMari Flynn is Director of the Miller Library at Keystone College and an adjunct writing instructor. She has presented nationally on creating brain-friendly research instruction and on the importance of rapport and relevance in information literacy programs. When she isn’t correcting papers or shelving books, you can find her perfecting her 8-Ball game, cheering for the Seahawks or contemplating ahimsa in downward-facing dog.  She has an MA in English from the University of Scranton and an MLS from SUNY Albany. She came to Keystone in 1998.

Presentation:
Book Discussion: From Sharp Edges to Blurred Lines: Negotiating the Intersections with a little help from our friends.

Panel: Searching for Common Ground in the Middle East

david-coppolaDavid Coppola, president of Keystone College, will moderate. As executive director of the Center for Christian-Jewish Understanding at Sacred Heart University, he coordinated international conferences and taught inter-religious understanding and dialog. Dr. Coppola also has also taught courses in ethics, education, religious studies, and truth, justice, and the common good. He was Vice President for Strategic Planning at Sacred Heart University before coming to Keystone in 2013.

 


rabbi-eugene-korn

Eugene Korn is a scholar in the fields of Jewish ethics, theology, and Jewish-Christian relations, specializing in the intersection of Jewish law and ethics, convenental theology, and Israel. He is currently the American Director of the Center for Jewish-Christian Understanding and Cooperation in Israel and Senior Research Fellow at Beit Morasha of Jerusalem’s Institute for Religion and Society.

 


Ibtisam-portrait

Ibtisam Barakat (إبتسام بركات ), acclaimed Palestinian-American author, poet, translator, artist and educator, grew up in Ramallah, Palestine. She came to the United States for an internship at The Nation magazine in New York City. She holds two master’s degrees, and has taught language ethics at Stephens College. Her memoir, TASTING THE SKY: A Palestinian Childhood, has won more than twenty awards and honors, including the International Reading Association’s Best Nonfiction for Young Adults; Middle East Council Best Literature Book; and Arab-American National Best Book for YA and Children.


Sandy-TolanSandy Tolan, teacher, journalist, and radio producer, is the author of The Lemon Tree: An Arab, A Jew, and the Heart of the Middle East. The Washington Post called the book “extraordinary” and selected it among their top nonfiction titles for 2006; the Christian Science Monitor wrote, “no novel could be more compelling” and proclaimed, “It will be one of the best nonfiction books you will read this year.” Sandy has reported from more than thirty countries, especially in the Middle East, Latin America, the Balkans, and Eastern Europe. As co-founder of Homelands Productions, he has produced hundreds of documentaries and features for public radio. He has written for more than forty newspapers and magazines.  He is associate professor at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at USC. sandytolan.com

 

Workshops

Personal Exploration

Workshop: The Scariest Thing In Life Is Life – Dana Shavin
What’s the scariest thing you can imagine? What would put you over the edge? Skydiving? Giving a speech? Quitting your job? Snakes? Everyone has something that shakes them to their core. Most people will name an activity or a thing. But there’s something bigger that scares most of us equally: living an authentic life. It’s scary because choosing to live authentically has the potential to challenge everything we do and believe. But it’s a risk that, untaken, leaves us living a life that’s uncomfortable at best, too small for us at worst. In this workshop Dana Shavin invites you to discover what it would mean to live authentically, and how to challenge what’s stopping you. Come prepared to think, work, and share as you’re comfortable, but most of all, come prepared to meet your truths.

Earth Science

Workshop: Earthquakes in a Historical Context – Ian Saginor

Visual Art

Workshop: Portrait of the Edge – Nikki Moser
EDGE: fringe, verge, skirt, surround, enclose, encircle, encompass, bound, outline, border,
extremity, fringe, margin, side, lip, rim, brim, brink, verge, perimeter, circumference, periphery, limits, bounds.
Where we notice the edge and how we respond to it defines us physically, emotionally, intellectually. This workshop takes the edge out of the metaphysical realm. We will take objects, materials, and time and make two- and three-dimensional “portraits” of our edges. Chocolate, supplies, and glue guns will be plentiful.

Fiction

Workshop: Leaping the Narrative Edge – Bim Angst

Our most memorable stories take us—as writers and readers—to the edge of something thrilling. The characters who populate our stories (both fictional and not) face the edge of something that takes them beyond prior experience into the unsettled space between knowing and not-knowing, comfort and danger, life and death. This edge becomes a line, a here and a there, a this and a that, a them and an us, a before and an after, and our characters—and we as writers—are presented a choice. Which way to lean? Do we step off?

Personal Narrative

Workshop: Poetry and Personal Narrative for Healing Self and Society – Ibtisam Barakat (إبتسام بركات )

In this workshop Ibtisam guides participants in a hands-on experience of beginning to write poems and/or personal narratives geared toward healing the self from past traumas. The goal of the workshop is to become better able to voice genuine feelings and concerns, and break out of the prison of confusion and isolation often imposed by difficult emotions. Written personal narratives can contribute to societal wellness by providing leadership in the form of examples of courage regarding least-articulated stories. They also can encourage the candidness and depth of the collective discourse, and speed up the process of social justice and inclusion.

Poetry

Workshop: The Poetry of Jazz, the Jazz of Poetry – David Elliott

Creative Exploration

Workshop: Our Edges: Exploring the Lines of Profound Affect through Guided Imagery, Art, and Digital Media – David W. Porter and Jean Luc ‘Djaloki’ Dessables

Dance

Workshop: You Can’t Stop the Beat – In Your Career and Your Life – Judine Somerville

Judine describes her workshop as “A dance party to end all dance parties” – an energetic class guaranteed to get your dance and Mojo-a-go-go, including warm-up, moves and grooves, great music, original Hairspray choreography, stretch and chill down.

Percussion

Workshop: Percussion Is Just The Beginning – Mara Fanyi, Drum, Dance & Song from the Heart in Poetic Motion

 

Reading List

 

book_the-art-of-controversy book_the-lemon-tree book_what-we-saw-at-night book_homegirls-and-handgrenadestasting-the-sky