A Conversation with Hafizah Augustus Geter and Tyrone Geter

Author Hafizah Augustus Geter amplifies The Black Period during book signing and moderated conversation at the Columbia Museum of Art

4 mins read

Columbia, S.C. – On the heels of her recently released debut memoir The Black Period: On Personhood, Race and Origin, celebrated author and poet Hafizah Augustus Geter joins the Friends of African American Art and Culture (FAAAC) for a reception, book signing, and moderated talk on Sunday, February 19, at the Columbia Museum of Art (CMA). The author will be joined by her father, world-class artist, painter, sculptor, illustrator, and arts educator Tyrone Geter, who provided the inspiring artwork featured on the book jacket and throughout the pages of The Black Period.
Hafizah Geter has received widespread literary praise for The Black Period since its release in last fall, including a review in The New Yorker, where it was cited as Best Book of 2022. The Black Period has also enjoyed praise from Good Morning America, Amazon Editors’ Pick, and BET.
“I say, ‘the Black Period,’ and mean ‘home’ in all its shapeshifting ways,” writes Geter. The Black Period creates a space for the beauty of Blackness, Islam, disability, and queerness to flourish and celebrates the many layers of her existence that white America has time and again sought to erase. Geter maps out her own narrative, weaving between a childhood populated with Southern and Nigerian relatives, her days in a small Catholic school, a loving but tragically short relationship with her mother, and the feelings of joy and community that Black Lives Matter protests engendered in her as an adult. Throughout, she forms a new personal and collective history, addressing the systems of inequity that make life difficult for people with disabilities, queer people, and communities of color while capturing a world brimming with potential, art, music, hope, and love.
Hafizah Geter is a Nigerian American poet, writer, and literary agent born in Zaria, Nigeria, and raised in Akron, Ohio, and Columbia, South Carolina. Called “one of 2020’s buzziest poets” by Marie Claire, Geter is also the author of poetry collection Un-American from Wesleyan University Press (September 2020), a 2021 NAACP Image Award nominee, a finalist for the 2021 PEN Open Book Award, and longlisted for the 2021 Brooklyn Public Library Literary Prize, which received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly. She lives with her wife in Brooklyn, New York, where she is at work on several new projects.
In a career that spans two continents, Tyrone Geter has built an international reputation as a world-class artist, painter, sculptor, illustrator, and teacher. Recently retired associate professor of art at Benedict College in Columbia, Geter grew up in Anniston, Alabama, during a time defined by strict segregation laws and social injustice. Anniston was a site of numerous acts of racial violence during the Civil Rights Era. The immediacy of these events and an inherited legacy of spiritual strength and fortitude against all the odds inform and shape Geter’s work.
Dr. Nancy Tolson, FAAAC board member, CMA commissioner, and assistant director of African American Studies at the University of South Carolina, guides the discussion and following Q&A session with the Geters.

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