The Friends of the Waccamaw Library 1st Thursday lecture series kicks off the new year with a political spin: John Rowley will share his much-tested and oft-wildly successful secrets for winning hearts and campaigns. His lecture will take place on Thursday, January 7 and will be livestreamed on Facebook on the Georgetown County Library channel.
A political strategist on over 500 campaigns in 47 states—from President and Governor to City Council—John Rowley is Founder of CounterPoint Messaging based in Nashville. He has provided political analysis on MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, FOX News, and NPR. He will discuss how team-building strategies drawn from sports present creative plans for navigating current politics.
The 1st Thursday series has an exciting lineup of programs for this spring. Here's a sneak peek:
Thursday, February 4: Mike Lassiter, “Our Vanishing Americana: South Carolina Portrait”
Author Mike Lassiter set out on backroads and backwaters across the Palmetto State to capture glimpses of small towns, community icons, and historic businesses. While rusted signs and faded brick facades of old storefronts first caught his eye, he pressed deeper to recover the lives of the folks inside those general stores, barber shops, and picture shows. A lot of those businesses may be gone—bypassed by interstates and big box retailers—but Lassiter keeps their stories alive.
Thursday, March 4: Dr. Judith A. Carney, “Black Rice: Shared Foodways between Africa and SC”
Judith A. Carney, Distinguished Professor of Geography at UCLA and author of Black Rice: The African Origins of Rice Cultivation in the Americas (Harvard University Press), will discuss connections between West African food cultivation and Lowcountry South Carolina—links centuries deep, yet still very much with us. Dr. Carney will illustrate how African subsistence staples arrived in the Americas during the colonial period. These foods came to define Lowcountry cuisine and shaped the memory dishes of the African Diaspora. Dr. Carney’s presentation is part of the Georgetown County Library’s “From Blue Hills to Green Sea: Representing South Carolina Foodways,” a virtual symposium on Thursday, March 4 and Friday, March 5. The symposium will feature several foodways scholars from across the country exploring South Carolina’s unique food and customs, and is generously supported by South Carolina Humanities, a not-for-profit organization inspiring, engaging, and enriching South Carolinians with programs on literature, history, culture and heritage.
Thursday, April 1: Deno Trakas, “The Perennial Appeal of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby”
What makes The Great Gatsby great? Why does this novel published in 1925 resonate so deeply with readers almost a century later? Deno Trakas will discuss the enduring value of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s iconic novel. A former student of preeminent Fitzgerald scholar Matthew J. Bruccoli, Dr. Trakas is Hoy Professor of American Literature at Wofford College, where he teaches a course on “F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Jazz Age, and The Depression.” Professor Trakas’s presentation will be a featured part of the Library’s F. Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald 101st Anniversary Celebration, scheduled for March 30-April 1.
Thursday, May 6: Charles Swenson, “On the Scene: Adventures of a Newspaper Editor”
Editor of the Coastal Observer since the paper’s founding in 1982, Charles Swenson has collected a wealth of newsworthy tales along the Waccamaw Neck—serious, sad, silly, strange. In today’s multi-media, transnational age with 24/7 streaming news, he can speak to how a local newspaper provides straightforward, on-the-scene articles and creates community connections. Swenson serves on the Executive Committee of the South Carolina Press Association and on the Board of Directors for the Frances P. Bunnelle Foundation.
Thursday, June 3: Amy Trice, “Achieving a Sustainable Ocean Economy for SC”
Director of Ocean Planning at the Ocean Conservancy in Washington, D.C., Amy Trice will discuss an issue vital on the SC coast: how best to address pollution, sea-level rise, and coastal flooding. She will explain how a coordinated approach can better balance the ocean economy with its diverse marine ecosystems. Trice has advocated for comprehensive ocean policies over three U.S. administrations, and Nature, Science, National Geographic, and NPR have interviewed her or featured her work.