On The Same Page Program at Jones Library

The Jones Library is holding its eighth On the Same Page community reading program, this year featuring the memoir Call Me American by author Abdi Nor Iftin.  A variety of programs are being offered to enrich the reading experience of this title and to encourage dialog about the themes the book presents, particularly immigration and African history.  The New Yorker calls the book “Riveting!” and Booklist states, “Absolutely remarkable and always as compelling as a novel… An essential ur-immigrant story, one that is enlightening and immediate.”

The following series of programs will be held during February and March at the Jones Library, and are inspired by topics and themes from the book.  The author event will be held at the Amherst Regional Middle School on Thursday, March 5 at 7 pm. For complete program descriptions, visit the program’s webpage at http://www.joneslibrary.org/onthesamepage.

Schedule of Events:

Tuesday, February 4 at 7:00 pm – Woodbury Room

Long Journey:  Somali Immigrants and Refugees to the United States – Elliot Fratkin will talk about nomadic pastoralism and how this ancient way of life fares in our modern world.  He will also discuss the Somali refugee camps in Kenya and migrants to US.

Thursday, February 13 at 7:00 pm – Amherst Room

Book Discussion of Call Me American – Join us for an in-depth discussion of our selected title, led by Jones Library librarian, Linda Wentworth.

Tuesday, February 18 at 7:00 pm – Woodbury Room

Refugees in Western Massachusetts – Jewish Family Services has played a vital role in Western Massachusetts in welcoming and resettling refugees.  Sara Bedford, New American Program Director, will discuss their work with refugees from around the world, including Somalia.

Thursday, March 5 at 7:00 pm – Amherst Regional Middle School Auditorium

On the Same Page …with Abdi Iftin – Join us for this author appearance as Abdi Iftin speaks about the book and his experiences.  Books will be available for purchase and signing.

Tuesday, March 10 at 7 pm – Amherst Room

Book Discussion of Call Me American – Join us for an in-depth discussion of our selected title, led by Jones Library librarian, Linda Wentworth.

Copies of Call Me American can be borrowed from the Jones Library and branches, requested and checked out from the C/W Mars library catalog, or purchased at Amherst Books in Amherst.

Abdi Iftin is the author of Call Me American, which was named a 2019 Notable Book by the American Library Association and as a Library Journal Best Books: Nonfiction Winner in 2018.  Iftin currently lives in Portland, Maine, where he works as an interpreter for Somalis who have immigrated to the state. Abdi was accepted to the University of Southern Maine, where he will be studying political science. He plays soccer every Saturday in a melting-pot league of Americans and immigrants from around the world.

On the Same Page – Amherst and its programs are made possible with special funding from the Friends of the Jones Libraries.

For further information about On the Same Page – Amherst, please contact Janet Ryan at 413/259-3223.

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