An Evening with Yaa Gyasi

November 4, 2021

When the doors opened to Shannon Hall last night, an abundance of enthusiastic students and community members inundated the theater, excited to hear what the 2021-2022 Go Big Read author, Yaa Gyasi, had to say about her book, the writing process, and her inspirations.

The night started off with a few words from Chancellor Becky Blank, explaining to the audience what helped her choose Transcendent Kingdom for this year’s Go Big Read book. Chancellor Blank also used this time to welcome our Go Big Read Author, Yaa Gyasi, and the event’s discussant, Prof. Ainehi Edoro-Glines, to the stage.

When Yaa Gyasi and Prof. Edoro-Glines took the stage, there was a lot of enthusiasm from the crowd. The two speakers discussed the important themes that were covered in the book, like race, science, religion, and mental health. Gyasi also talked about how she came to write the book and where she gained the inspiration to write a main character like Gifty.

Yaa Gyasi discussing her book, Transcendent Kingdom, with discussant, Prof. Ainehi Edoro-Glines (Photo: Olivia Poches)

The keynote was followed by a question and answer session, and the event turned into a community conversation, as Gyasi answered questions about race, religion, and writing.

Yaa Gyasi’s author keynote was recorded and archived. You can find it on the homepage at Follow @GoBigRead on twitter or Facebook to connect to the conversation and to find information about events relating to Transcendent Kingdom’s topics and themes.

Olivia Poches

Student Assistant