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Unraveling the Violence of Jim Crow South with Tananarive Due

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The elements of a scary story might be exotic, super-natural, or even mundane. Tananarive Due weaves all of those things together in an ethereal world of her creation to explore the violence of the Jim Crow South.   

Due is an award-winning author who teaches Black Horror and Afrofuturism at the University of California-Los Angeles. She is an executive producer for the documentary “Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror” and has written for “The Twilight Zone” and “Horror Noire” projects. She is co-writing a Black horror graphic novel, “The Keeper,” alongside her husband, Steven Barnes. Due’s work in the Black speculative fiction genre has won various awards including an American Book Award, an NAACP Image Award, and a British Fantasy Award. Her books include “Ghost Summer: Stories,” “My Soul to Keep,” and “The Good House.” She co-authored “Freedom in the Family: A Mother-Daughter Memoir” with her late mother, civil rights activist Patricia Due. Her new historical fiction book, “The Reformatory,” is based on the life of her relative, Robert Stephens. Set in Jim Crow Florida, it follows twelve-year-old Robbie Stephens, Jr. who is sent to a reformatory, where he must learn how to navigate the harsh reality of the Jim Crow South. 

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