Author Arsenault to give outdoor book talk
Minor Memorial Library in Roxbury will present an outdoor book talk with Kerry Arsenault Sept. 5 at 2 p.m.
The local author will discuss her new book, “Mill Town,” at the South Street library.
A rain date of Sept. 6 is planned.
Attendees are invited to bring a picnic lunch, a blanket or chair and a cup for beverages, which will be provided by the library.
Space will be limited; social distancing measures will be followed and masks must be worn.
“Mill Town” is an American story, human predicament, and a moral wake-up call that asks: what are we willing to tolerate and whose lives are we willing to sacrifice for our own survival?
Arsenault grew up in the rural working-class town of Mexico, Maine.
For over 100 years the community orbited around a paper mill that employs most townspeople, including three generations of Arsenault’s own family.
Years after she moved away, Arsenault realized the price she paid for that seemingly secure childhood.
The mill, while providing livelihoods for nearly everyone, also contributed to the destruction of the environment and the decline of the town’s economic, moral, and emotional health in a slow-moving catastrophe, earning the area the nickname “Cancer Valley.”
In “Mill Town,” Arsenault undertakes an excavation of a collective past, sifting through historical archives and scientific reports, talking to family and neighbors, and examining her own childhood to present a portrait of a community that illuminates not only the ruin of her hometown and the collapse of the working-class of America, but also the hazards of both living in and leaving home, and the silences we are all afraid to violate.
In prose, Arsenault explores the corruption of bodies: the human body, bodies of water, and governmental bodies, and what it’s like to come from a place you love but doesn’t always love you back.
Arsenault will be joined in conversation with Lisa Huber, PhD, discussing Maine’s nickname “Vacationland” and how that myth silences communities living in the periphery of tourism.
Arsenault is the book review editor for
Huber is a specialist in community peacebuilding and conflict transformation and has worked in diverse settings as a consultant, facilitator, peace and social justice educator.
She is also a teaching artist with a passion for storytelling, fiction writing, poetry and spoken word.
For more information and RSVP, call 860-350-2181 or visit www.minormemoriallibrary.org.