Yaa Gyasi: Online

Peter Hurley/Vilcek Foundation

Yaa Gyasi: Online

Monday, November 16, 2020 7:30 pm PST

11/16/2020 7:30 pm 11/16/2020 America/Los_Angeles Yaa Gyasi: Online https://lectures.org/event/yaa-gyasi/ lectures.org

At lectures.org

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Literary Arts

Yaa Gyasi is the author of Homegoing, one of the most celebrated debut novels of 2016. A riveting, kaleidoscopic novel, Homegoing is a story of race, history, ancestry, love, and time that traces the descendants of two sisters torn apart in eighteenth-century Africa across three hundred years in Ghana and AmericaGyasi’s new book, Transcendent Kingdom, is a powerful, raw, intimate, deeply layered novel about a Ghanaian family in Alabama.

This event is online only.

All Literary Arts Series, Create Your Own Series, and Super SAL subscribers (except Student/25 & Under and complimentary subscriptions) receive Gyasi’s forthcoming book, Transcendent Kingdom.

Transcendent Kingdom is a portrait of a family of Ghanaian immigrants ravaged by depression and addiction and grief—a novel about faith, science, religion, love. The novel centers around Gifty, a sixth-year PhD candidate in neuroscience at Stanford, studying reward-seeking behavior in mice and the neural circuits of depression and addiction. Her brother, Nana, was a gifted high school athlete who died of a heroin overdose after an ankle injury left him hooked on OxyContin. Her suicidal mother is living in her bed. Gifty is determined to discover the scientific basis for the suffering she sees all around her. But even as she turns to the hard sciences to unlock the mystery of her family’s loss, she finds herself hungering for her childhood faith and grappling with the evangelical church in which she was raised, whose promise of salvation remains as tantalizing as it is elusive.

An important new literary voice, Gyasi’s writing has been praised by National Book Award winner Ta-Nehisi Coates as “an inspiration” and “what happens when you pair a gifted literary mind to an epic task.” In September 2016, she was chosen by Coates as one of the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35” honorees.

Born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama, Gyasi is a graduate of the Iowa Writer’s Workshop and lives in Berkeley, California. She is the winner of the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize, the PEN/Hemingway Award for Best First Novel, and was a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Fiction and the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize. Homegoing also was a winner at the 2017 Audie Awards, and a Seattle Reads pick for 2018.

Event Details


Know Before You Go

Need access to the digital event?

Most tickets have been emailed for Gyasi’s event, so be sure to check your inbox for an email from boxoffice@lectures.org. Call us at 206-621-2230 x10 if you can’t find them.

Your e-tickets, which come attached in a PDF with your ticket order confirmation email as well, will contain your digital access password. Return to the event page the night of the event at lectures.org and enter the password where prompted. The program begins at 7:30 p.m. (PST) and will be available for viewing for a week after the event.

SAL will also send an email the day of the event, containing the same information. If you have opted out of receiving SAL emails, you will miss this important information—please email us at boxoffice@lectures.org and we will assist you.

Have a question for the speaker?

Want to ask Yaa Gyasi something? Send your question to SAL’s Associate Director at rahoogs@lectures.org—it might be asked during the event!


Literary Arts Series, Create Your Own Series, and Super SAL subscribers receive a copy of Transcendent Kingdom. You should receive a Gyasi Book Ticket with your admission ticket. Books will be mailed directly to your home from Elliott Bay Book Company.

Note: Student/25 & Under and complimentary subscriptions do not receive a book.


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