Schomburg Center Literary Festival returns in-person to celebrate Black writers, culture


NEW YORK — On Saturday, the Schomburg Center Literary Festival returns for a day-long celebration of Black writers and culture, promising to bring together book lovers and their favorite authors.

For the first time since 2019, the festival will be held in-person as an outdoor festival in Harlem. There will be storytelling workshops, vendors and exhibitors and even a visit from the New York Public Library’s book mobile.

The festival is being called a community-wide celebration of Black joy and literacy. It expands on the center’s 97-year tradition of championing authors of African descent.

CBS2’s Dana Tyler spoke to Novella Ford, the associate director of exhibitions and public programming at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

“When we think about emancipation, when we think about freedom in this country, one of the things that I don’t want to get lost is the importance of reading and how enslaved people at one time, it was dangerous for them to learn how to read, for them to access information,” Ford said. “So this idea of reading as a rebellious act, right, like when we’re thinking about the banning of books right now in this country, but also it being a joyful act, right, and so that freedom to read whatever it is that you want to get into is most important and what we want to celebrate this year.”

You can watch the full interview in the video above.

For more information about the festival, visit nypl.org/spotlight/schomburg/literary-festival.



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