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the gibbes museum of art
Let My People Free (detial), ca. 1945, By William H. Johnson (b. 1901 - d. 1970); Oil on paperboard; 38 1/4 x 30 in. (97.1 x 76.2 cm); Gift of the Harmon Foundation; 1967.59.649

Mightier Than the Sword: Writing into History

March 10, 2022 @ 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM



From Frederick Douglass and the abolitionists of the 19th century to James Baldwin, the power of the written word has always played a critical role in the pursuit of social progress. Inspired by the exhibition, Fighters for Freedom: William H. Johnson Picturing Justice, and in partnership with local, woman-owned bookstore Itinerant Literate, we’ll discuss the historical influence of written discourse on social justice movements.

This event will not be held at the Gibbes Museum, but in Park Circle at the Park Circle Gallery, 4820 Jenkins Avenue.

$20 Members | $30 Non-Members | $10 Students/Faculty with Valid ID

*A 3% credit card fee will apply

About Our Speakers

Cinelle Barnes is a formerly undocumented memoirist, essayist, and educator from Manila, Philippines, and is the author of MONSOON MANSION: A MEMOIR (Little A, 2018, Booklist starred review) and MALAYA: ESSAYS ON FREEDOM (Little A, 2019), and the editor of the New York Times New & Noteworthy book, A MEASURE OF BELONGING: 21 WRITERS OF COLOR ON THE NEW AMERICAN SOUTH (Hub City Press, 2020). Cinelle earned an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Converse College. Her writing has appeared or been featured in the New York Times, Longreads, Garden & Gun, Electric Literature, Buzzfeed Reader, Literary Hub, Hyphen, and CNN Philippines, among others. Her essay, “Carefree White Girls, Careful Brown Girls”, is anthologized in A Map Is Only One Story: Twenty Writers on Immigration, Family, and the Meaning of Home (Catapult, 2020). Cinelle is a contributing editor, instructor, and writer at Catapult. Cinelle’s work has received fellowships and grants from the Sustainable Arts Foundation, VONA, Kundiman, the John and Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund, the Lowcountry Quarterly Arts Grant, and Capita. Her debut memoir was listed as a Best Nonfiction Book of 2018 by Bustle and nominated for the 2018 Reading Women Nonfiction Award. She is the 2021 Vulgar Geniuses Nonfiction Honorary Awardee for her writing and social justice work and 2021 writer-in-residence at Pasadena City College, and was a Focus Fellowship artist-in-residence at AIR Serenbe in 2020, a short-term writer-in-residence at City of Asylum in 2019, and the 2018-19 writer-in-residence at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art in Charleston, SC, where she and her family live. In 2021, Cinelle was named one of 50 Most Influential by Charleston Business, joining thought leaders in state and local politics, the arts, academia, activism, healthcare, and business.

The Rev. Dr. Byron L. Benton serves as the Senior Pastor of Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church located in North Charleston, South Carolina. He works closely with public and private institutions, serves on and advises various boards, and speaks across the country on critical issues that impact families. His commitment to community and families is evident throughout his ministry. He serves as co-president of the Charleston Area Justice Ministry (CAJM), and as a board member of the Lowcountry Foodbank, and African-American Chamber Fund. He is an advisor to The Four Rivers Outreach Community Development Corporation in Charleston, South Carolina, and the founder and host of the Mountaintop Manna Podcast.

Journalist and author Isaac J. Bailey was intended to join us for this program, but due to unforeseen circumstances will no longer be able to participate.