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RARI 2018 Kick-Off for The Hate U Give

By Nicolette Baffoni | February 2, 2018

On Saturday, January 27 at The Pavilion at Grace in Providence, the RI Center for the Book hosted the kick-off event for 2018’s Reading Across Rhode Island (RARI) selection The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.

The program opened with performances by AS220Youth and Living Literature. AS220Youth works with at-risk and-beyond risk young people age 14 -21, providing mentoring and educational activities while encouraging creative and artistic expression. Living Literature is a live Readers’ Theater group that has been working with RARI for several years to adapt the book selections and perform around the state at libraries and schools.


AS220 Youth performed original raps and poetry


Living Literature shared a scene from book

Two speakers followed, introducing the themes of The Hate U Give.  RARI Honorary Chair Jordan Seaberry, Director of Public Policy and Advocacy at the Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence spoke about the legacies of racism and oppression following from slavery to mass incarceration and police brutality.  Keynote speaker Shawn A. Christian, Associate Provost, Associate Professor of English, African American, & American Studies, Wheaton College focused more specifically on the novel, discussing the importance of listening to and amplifying the voices of young black women.

RARI 2018 Honorary Chair Jordan Seaberry


Keynote Speaker Shawn A. Christian

Holly Harriel of Civic Salon LLC closed the program by discussing the “digital archive” of RARI 2018 that Civic Salon will create through Twitter chats, unified social media tags, and online resources.  The first RARI #CivicChat will take place on Twitter on Tuesday, February 20, 2018 from 8-9 pm.  You can use the handy image of hashtags and @’s for Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to follow and amplify RARI2018.

The Hate U Give Resource Guide compiled by the RARI committee is available for download, while additional resources for the book can be found at Civic Salon’s Civic Lab.

Angie Thomas will visit RI on April 12th and 13th; her schedule will be released soon so keep an eye out for that! For more information about borrowing sets of books for your classroom, library or book group, or to help purchase additional copies of the book to meet the high community demand, contact Kate Lentz (kate@ribook.org).

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