A Book Discussion with Emily Herring Wilson '61

Image courtesy of Ken Bennett.
UNC Greensboro's University Libraries will host a book discussion of “The Three Graces of Val-Kill” with author Emily Herring Wilson '61 on Tuesday, October 16, 2018, at 3:30 p.m. in Hodges Reading Room in Jackson Library.

“The Three Graces of Val-Kill" changes the way readers think about Eleanor Roosevelt. In her book, Wilson examines what she calls the most formative period in Roosevelt's life, from 1922 to 1936, when she cultivated an intimate friendship with Marion Dickerman and Nancy Cook who helped her build a cottage on the Val-Kill Creek in Hyde Park on the Roosevelt family land.

In the early years, the three women—the "three graces,” as Franklin Delano Roosevelt called them—were nearly inseparable and forged a female-centered community for each other, for family and for New York's progressive women. Examining this network of close female friends gives readers a more comprehensive picture of the Roosevelts and Eleanor's burgeoning independence in the years that marked Franklin's rise to power in politics.

Wilson takes care to show all the nuances and complexities of the women’ s relationship, which blended the political with the personal. Val-Kill was not only home to Eleanor but also a crucial part of how she became one of the most admired American political figures of the twentieth century. In Wilson’s telling she emerges out of the shadows of monumental histories and documentaries as a woman in search of herself.

Wilson resides in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She is author of "No One Gardens Alone: A Life of Elizabeth Lawrence" and co-author of “North Carolina Women: Making History." Wilson graduated from Woman's College at the University of North Carolina, now UNCG, in 1961 and attended graduate school at Wake Forest University in 1962.

The event is free and open to the public and co-sponsored by UNCG's University Libraries, Greensboro Bound Literary Festival and the North Carolina Literary Map. For parking information visit parking.uncg.edu. For more information or disability accommodations, contact Alisha Rivera-Holmes at aerivera@uncg.edu or 336.334.3741.

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