Fall 2023 Workshop:

Channeling History with Ladee Hubbard

Join American Library in Paris Scholar of Note Ladee Hubbard in a two-part writing workshop devoted to historical fiction. 

During the workshop, participants will focus on how to write history: conducting historical research, adopting historical language, and situating themselves in foreign time. Led by Hubbard, they will demystify archival research, and consider the imagination required in recreating an era. How do we write characters into the traps of history, and how do we write them out? They will consider the boundaries between fact and fiction: what is our relationship to accuracy, and how do we define this? 

Simultaneously, participants will consider the axes of socially conscious literature. History is constantly adopted, appropriated, used and abused to serve political and artistic ends. Is all historical writing necessarily political writing? How do plot and character map onto the interstices of the personal and the political? When we wield history as a tool for narrative, what is our responsibility to the present?  

The workshop will unfold over two ninety minute sessions. These will take place in person at the Library on 28 September and 4 October from 19h00 to 20h30 CEST and are open to both Library Members and non-members.

The American Library in Paris Scholar of Note program is generously sponsored by the de Groot Foundation. Learn more here.

About Ladee Hubbard

Ladee Hubbard is the author of the novels The Last Suspicious Holdout, The Talented Ribkins, which received the 2018 Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence and the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction, and The Rib King. Her writing has appeared in Oxford American, Guernica, Virginia Quarterly and Callaloo among other venues. She is a recipient of a Berlin Prize, a Radcliffe Institute Fellowship and a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award.

While in residence at the American Library, Ladee will be developing a novel using classical mythology and genre-bending techniques to examine the gaze directed towards Black women today.

With three works of fiction examining race and power in America across different historical periods, Ladee is an expert in inhabiting the past, and wielding it as a tool to comment on the present.

Ladee’s most recent short story collection imagines life in a Black neighborhood from the 1980’s through Obama’s election. Listen to what she said about it on NPR

The Rib King is a domestic tale turned revenge saga following the servants of an aristocratic family in decline in early-twentieth-century Chicago. Read a review in the Washington Post

Ladee’s debut novel, The Talented Ribkins, was inspired by a famous essay by philosopher and activist W.E.B. Du Bois entitled “The Talented Tenth”. Read what she has to say about Du Bois in the Guardian.

Register for the Workshop

Advance payment and registration is required. Registration is non-refundable.

Members rate: 40€ per participant.

Non-members rate: 60€ per participant.

To register, please complete the contact information form and payment below.

Contact Details


Payment Details

Ticket Type
We take your privacy and the protection of your personal data very seriously. This website is GDPR compliant, uses only essential cookies that are necessary to function, and does not use cookies that collect or store data about you or your device. By using this website, you agree to our Data Protection Policy.