AUGUSTA, GA. (WJBF)- Augusta University continues celebrating Black History month through literature.

Students at AU recited words from selections of black writers during the Black History read-in. The event’s goal is to encourage a love of literature and reading. 

The read- in is an event a part of a national organization that happens annually. 

“We absolutely want to make sure that, during Black History Month at least– if not all year– that we are focusing and privileging, centering African-American authors,” Chair Department of English & World Languages Seretha Williams said.

Volunteer readers spent time reading some of their favorite words from books like Octavia Butler and Tony Morrison.

“They’re writers, I think, that have so much power and beauty within the words and within the stories that they tell,” Junior Literature Major Aaron Hayes said.

And aside from stories shared by established authors, students shared their own work. 

Augusta University Senior Emily Johnson chose a piece from some of Octavia Butler’s work because she wanted to dive deeper into her experiences.

“She is, God she’s an expert at what she does and I just appreciate being able to read something from someone else’s perspective because we don’t really– like I said, we don’t really get to hear from a lot of black voices and I wanna make sure that I hear from everybody,” Senior English Major Emily Johnson said.

Latria Graham, MFA, is a Visiting Scholar for English and World Languages for the Spring 2023 semester at Augusta University, and gave the event’s keynote speech. Graham has published pieces in Southern Living, Garden & Gun, Oxford American, and Outside, among many others.

Graham will lead a creative nonfiction workshop for anyone to join, Wednesday evening. 

Students say they’re glad to learn and understand the lives and stories of these authors especially during black history month.