Archive for books

Our Beloved Justice

Posted in Culture with tags , , , , on January 14, 2013 by substanceandstyledc

Our beloved Supreme Court Justice that represents an American dream come true, the Honorable Sonia Sotomayor will appear in an intimate conversation Friday, January 18 at 7:00pm at George Washington University’s Lisner Auditorium discussing her new book. Sotomayor, the High Court’s first Hispanic member, knew from early on that she wanted to be a lawyer; by age forty, she was a federal district judge. Her memoir, My Beloved World is a story of hard work, vision, and perseverance despite many obstacles. Her rise as a Latina from a Bronx housing project to a spot on the Supreme Court inspires hope in oneself and the Nation. Tickets can be purchased in advance. One book and one ticket: $30; one book and two tickets: $40.


An Eye on “I” in September

Posted in Culture, Politics, Reading List with tags , , , , , , on August 15, 2012 by substanceandstyledc

The first sub-Saharan African to hold the position of Secretary-General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan has led an extraordinary life of service to the global community. Wednesday, September 5 at 7:00pm at the Sixth and I Synagogue he will share some of his experiences and knowledge that he has memorialized in his new book, Interventions: A Life in War and Peace in conversation with David Ignatius. Immediately following Mr. Annan will sign books for a limited period of time. A single ticket for the event is $36 and includes one book. Two guests may attend for $45 and receive one book. This signing is being presented in collaboration with Politics & Prose. There will be no walk-up box office sales.

Thursday September 20 at 7:30pm international recording artist, actor and activist Wyclef will also appear in conversation at Sixth and I promoting his memoir Purpose: An Immigrant’s Story. His Washington stop on the book tour is one of the very few in which he will also perform a set of his latest music before signing books. Tickets are $35 and include 1 copy of the book. Doors for this event open at 6:30pm.

Put a Poem in Your Pocket

Posted in Culture with tags , , on April 25, 2012 by substanceandstyledc

Dolores Kendrick, a native Washingtonian, published author and respected voice has served as the Poet Laureate of the District Columbia since 1999. In her role as Poet Laureate she engages residents in programs and events to highlight poetry in the District. April 26, 2012 is a day that every Washingtonian can help do the same thing by participating in Poem in Your Pocket Day.

In 2002 Poem in Your Pocket Day began as part of National Poetry Month celebration in New York and has since spread across the United States. The idea is simple. Choose a poem that you love, carry it in your pocket and share it with friends, colleagues and strangers when you have the chance during the course of the day.

If you don’t have a favorite poem don’t worry. provides an entire page dedicated to Washington poets, poems about the District and resources to connect you to writing centers and festivals throughout the year. You can also find venues to share your own poetry by visiting Poetry in DC.  The site is a popular blog that keeps a current list of opportunities in the Washington area to listen to and share your poetry at open mic nights and other special events. You can also follow Poetry in DC on Twitter. The handle is aptly: @poetryindc

For those more interested in digging deeper in the works of other Washington poets, the Washington DC Poetry Tour provides that opportunity. The Poetry Foundation allows guests to download free audio tours and maps that use poets and poetry to explore the National Mall and Northwest DC. On their site you can also download a walking tour beginning at the Library of Congress and ending in Dupont Circle. The online and audio tour features poems written in and about DC.

On April 26 if someone asks if that is a poem in your pocket or if you are just happy to see them – answer both.

Black Men Speak

Posted in Culture with tags , , on October 4, 2011 by substanceandstyledc

Political commentator and cultural critic, Toure will participate in a discussion with Washington Post editorial board member Jonathan Capehart and columnist Roland Martin at 14th Street location of Busboys and Poets on October 5 at 6:30pm. This event is free.

On October 14 at 7:30pm writers R. Dwayne Betts and Ta-Nehisi Coates will continue the 2011-2012 Pen/Faulkner conversation series at the Folger Shakespeare Library. R. Dwayne Betts is the author of the memoir A Question of Freedom and a collection of poetry Shahid Reads His Own Palm. Ta-Nehisi Coates is a senior editor for The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues for and the magazine. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle. Tickets are on sale here.

District of Connections

Posted in Reading List with tags , , on September 9, 2011 by substanceandstyledc

Building a personal and professional network is not always an easy thing to do, particularly in Washington. Even after you may feel you have built a solid network of good people around you, it can still be difficult maintaining those relationships. Each relationship with a colleague, friend or family member requires energy, attention and work. Rather you are a young adult or seasoned professional, now is always the perfect time to learn new skills or brush up on old ones to help you understand and navigate relationship building with substance and style.

Two standout books penned by African Americans that share a wealth of knowledge are The Personal Touch: What You Really Need to Succeed in Today’s Fast-Paced Business World by public relations and advocate, Terrie Williams and the classic Success Runs in Our Race: The Complete Guide to Effective Networking in the Black Community by George C. Fraser. The latter many consider required reading for someone looking to build his or her career. Both books fully grasp the idea that networking is not about the quantity of connections but the quality of connections. In a city built on connections and learning how to connect the dots, these are two books that you should definitely check out.

Celebrating History

Posted in Culture with tags , , on February 3, 2011 by substanceandstyledc

In recognition of Black History Month 2011 the DC Public Library has planned an impressive number of lectures, re-enactments, musical performances, children’s programs, film presentations, exhibits, trivia contests, book discussions and more. A highlight of the events that will take place in branches across the District over the next month is a lunchtime presentation by NPR personality and author Michele Norris on February 9 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Branch. She will be discussing “How Far Has America Progressed Toward Racial Justice in the Age of America’s First Black President?” For more information about this and other programs visit their site today.

The Negro Problem

Posted in Commentary, Politics with tags , on January 12, 2010 by substanceandstyledc
As the nation continues to divert attention away from health care, job creation and global warming to focus on the use of the word “Negro”  on the census and by a current sitting United States Senator, it is a prime opportunity to also look back on the classic work, The Negro Problem. The book had such contributors as Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois. One could further explore the Negro Problem by digging into An American Dilemma: The Negro Problem and Modern Democracy, a report funded by the Carnegie Foundation and later credited as a framework for how Americans viewed race relations and reconciliation.
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