Rebecca Clarren, an award-winning journalist, will be presenting "Little shtetl on the prairie: reckoning with the past" a free hour-long slide show and talk at the Oregon Jewish Museum on April 10th at noon. Clarren's relatives escaped pogroms in Russia and became Jewish ranchers and homesteaders in South Dakota. Throughout her childhood, Clarren was told stories of their fortitude and luck - stories of her uncle "Bronco Lou" and of the mikvahs her great-great-grandmother took in the ice-choked creek behind their shack on the prairie - and yet among the narratives that were never shared were stories of the Lakota, their neighbors. In an effort to better understand the truth of the past and possibly find some healing, Clarren, who has written about Indigenous Americans for national magazines such as The Nation, Indian Country Today and High Country News, has set out to find the descendants of the Lakota families who were displaced and harmed by the amoral land allotment policies which provided her family with free land. The program, funded by a grant from the Regional Arts and Culture Council, is part of the OJMCHE's brown bag lunch series.
Rebecca will be reading at two panels on Sunday, March 3rd: “The Rancher’s Lament” with New York Times reporter John Branch from 10-11, and “Strength From Kindness” with novelists Elizabeth Berg, Leif Enger and Daniel Gumbiner at 2:30. Author book signing to follow each event.
As part of the Portland Book Festival, Rebecca Clarren will read at the Portland Art Museum from her debut novel, Kickdown.
Clarren is paired with Aggressive Attitude by Joe Feddersen; found in the CCNA: Not Fragile exhibit within the Native American Art on the 3rd floor of the Portland Art Museum. Please reference the Portland Art Museum Map to find this location.