In a panel discussion held recently at the Central Library as part of WordFest (EVENT#30: STORIES CITIES TELL), four world-class authors discussed the role that cities played in their work. Is the character of a city created by the people that move through it, or does the structure of a city shape the trajectory of its population’s character?
Depends on the city, of course.
The experience of real children navigating the barricades of Belfast, as reported by Marcello Di Cintio’s Walls, is very different from the fictional structures imposed on the characters of Pasha Malla’s People Park. When the discussion was opened to the audience for questions one of the first hands raised wanted to know what the authors thought about the state of the city they were in, Calgary. As the only Calgary writer on hand, Di Cintio gracefully handled the question with a thoughtful analysis of how the presence of the Rocky mountains on the Western horizon affected Calgarians the same way Lake Michigan cradles the east end of Joe Meno’s Chicago.
The topic of Calgary also raised the question of whether or not Calgary had yet been ‘written’ the way that other major cities of the world are represented in literature – a highly debatable, unanswerable question that can really only be addressed through reading. And writing.
And if you’re writing Calgary you’ve got to know Calgary.
And nobody knows Calgary better than the select group of historians, authors, and storytellers gathering at the library this weekend for HERITAGE WEEKEND 2012. Save yourself lifetimes worth of research and experience the stories that built our city like you’ve never heard before.
Saturday, Oct 20
1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
John Dutton Theatre (Central Library 2nd floor)
Author Stephanie White explores a century of plans for Calgary, some remaining unrealized, others waiting for their time to come.
Saturday, Oct 20
2:00 to 4:00 p.m.
John Dutton Theatre (Central Library, 2nd floor)
Calgary’s best historian-storytellers, Hugh Dempsey, Harry Sanders, Max Foran and Nancy Townshend, and Library writer-in-residence Brian Brennan for fascinating and entertaining stories of Calgary’s past.
For the full list of inspiration-guaranteed Heritage Weekend events taking place October 19th & 20th, click here.