In the name of Kurt Vonnegut, the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library hosts a variety of eclectic events in January 2012. He revolutionized the literary world with his stripped down, ramshackle observations about life in the 20th century. Many of his insights hold water today in relation to our society. He left his mark across the Circle City, particularly as a student at Butler University for a brief amount of time. The Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library was established to ensure that Vonnegut’s legacy and ideas live on in his Hoosier homeland. Enjoy these up-coming events at the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library this January.
Book Club – Book club participants gather for a morning discussion of Catch 22 by Joseph Heller. This satirical, historical novel was written in 1953 and published in 1961. Set during World War II, it is cited as one of the greatest literary works on the 20th century. It’s non-chronological style is similar to some of Vonnegut’s own works including Slaughter House Five. The story follows Captain John Yossarian, a United States Army Air Force bombardier on the fictitious Pianosa island in the Mediterranean Sea. It acts a critique of bureaucratic operation and reasoning, specifically circular logic.
Japanese Americans share their stories of time in internment camps – After the attack on Pearl Harbor that prompted American involvement in World War II, many Japanese Americans living on the West coast were relocated and held in internment camps by the U.S. government. The internment stemmed from growing prejudice against Japanese immigrants settling in California at the beginning of the 20th Century, but the effort was cloaked under the umbrella of keeping America safe from further attack by Japan. Now, survivors of this dark scar on American history speak out about their experiences at the internment camps. Panelists will touch on the subjects of war, peace, loss and healing. The Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library began exploring these themes in November of 2011 with the screening of the award-winning documentary The Cats of Mirikitani and an exhibition of the art of former internee, Jimmy Mirikitani.
Liza Newman Discusses Labor Organizer’s Connection to Vonnegut – As the “Right to Work” debate heats up during another congressional session at the Indiana State Capitol Building, the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library seizes the opportunity to join the discussion. Liza Newman, the granddaughter of famous Hoosier radical and labor organizer Powers Hapgood, discusses her grandfather’s history making life. In addition, Hapgood was the inspiration of the character Kenneth Whistler in Vonnegut’s Jailbird. Newman will share how her grandfather forged this amazing connection to Vonnegut, taking a place in literary history.
Butler String Quartet – The Butler University School of Music will provide live free music at the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library. Don’t miss the Butler String Quartet at this free Indianapolis music event.
Stories of the Schehr Collection – Hear behind the scenes stories about some of the most rare items in the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library collection. Plus, peruse the newest items acquired by the library in the Schehr Collection. Owner Kevin Schehr will be on hand to share first hand stories about the collection.
HART Presents Happy Birthday, Wanda June – Heartland Actors’ Repertory Theatre will present a staged reading of Kurt Vonnegut’s only play. Produced in partnership with the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library to commemorate their one year anniversary, tickets to this Indianapolis arts event are $45. With the opening line, “This is a simple-minded play about men who enjoy killing, and those who don’t,” how could you miss a performance of a quirky piece of Vonnegut theater.
Head to the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library to take advantage of all of these amazing Indianapolis events. Before you peruse this unique Indianapolis art gallery, treat yourself to a delicious meal at any of these Indianapolis restaurants. Afterward, enjoy a nightcap at any of these Indianapolis bars, and discuss your favorite aspects of this treasured Indianapolis attraction.
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Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library
The Emelie Building
340 N Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46204