Spotlight for the week of September 14

Sep 14, 2020

“Spotlight on Lifelong Learning” with Laura Loth, is a weekly look at some of the exciting public conversations upcoming around Memphis. Laura Loth is a professor at Rhodes College.


How do we experience wonder when the world feels out of control?  Since the onset of the pandemic, many folks have been exploring their connection to the natural world. Whether it’s the uptick in visits to state and national parks, or our attention to the creatures who inhabit our backyards and visit our balconies, we’ve watched nature’s rhythms a little more closely and found solace.

These questions are at the center of poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil’s recent collection of poems and essays entitled A World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments. Nezhukumatathil is a professor of English and creative writing in the University of Mississippi's MFA program. Tonight at 6pm she’ll be joined in conversation with one of my favorite nature writers, Dr.  J. Drew Lanham, a poet and Professor of Ecology at Clemson University. He is the author of an acclaimed book entitled The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair with Nature.  Both Nezhukumatathil and Lanham are engaged in exploring how our experiences of the air, the water, and the soil are linked to our inalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Their conversation is sponsored by Novel Bookstore.

For links to these virtual events in Memphis, as well as other suggestions for lifelong learning, keep up with the Spotlight webpage, and make sure to follow us on Facebook.