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Shaping MemoriesReflections of African American Women Writers$
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Joanne Veal Gabbin

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781604732740

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604732740.001.0001

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Afterword: Rites, Rituals, and Creative Ceremonies

Afterword: Rites, Rituals, and Creative Ceremonies

A Social History of the Wintergreen Women Writers’ Collective

(p.219) Afterword: Rites, Rituals, and Creative Ceremonies
Shaping Memories

Sandra Y. Govan

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter describes how twelve to fourteen African-American women poets, scholars, fiction writers, essayists, and general readers have gathered together, each year since 1987, in the secluded Blue Ridge Mountain haven of Wintergreen, Virginia, for an annual retreat. By meeting early in the fall semester, the demands of teaching, department and committee meetings, or community service at their respective institutions had not yet become too burdensome or onerous. However, September on the mountain proved unlike September in Charlotte or September in Richmond, Radford, Harrisonburg, Christiansburg, or Chapel Hill. Those first few years set the tone for subsequent Wintergreen gatherings and established a loose framework for events that became their rites, rituals, and ceremonies. Some customs remained the same over time while others subtly evolved or changed.

Keywords:   annual retreat, African-American women, Blue Ridge Mountain, Wintergreen, Virginia, rites, rituals, ceremonies

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