The four editors of “Voices from the Heartland” – a collection of personal essays by 50 Oklahoma women – will sign copies of their new book on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at the Rogers State University Bookstore.
RSU professors Dr. Carolyn Taylor, Dr. Emily Dial-Driver, Dr. Sally Emmons-Featherston and Carole Burrage (former RSU professor) will sign copies of the book from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the RSU Bookstore, located in the Student Union on the Claremore campus.
The new book is a compilation of essays focusing on women’s contributions to Oklahoma’s recent past. It records defining moments in women’s lives, whether surviving the Oklahoma City bombing or surviving abuse, and represents a wide range of professions, lifestyles and backgrounds “to show how extraordinary lives have grown from the seeds of ordinary girlhoods,” according to Taylor.
The book is an official Oklahoma Centennial Project as designated by the Oklahoma Centennial Commission.
All four editors have contributed essays to the book. Taylor recalls the inspiration she received from two heroines she never met while attempting to pass tough legislation as a member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives. Dial-Driver wonders who will pick up the mantle of matriarch when her mother dies. Burrage writes about her two sons, their difficult births and their obvious perfection – through the eyes of a mother. And Emmons-Featherston recalls battling with anorexia and emerging with a healthy and rewarding lifestyle. In addition, Julie Carson, a Claremore resident and a state education regent, reflects on her life as a southpaw.
The book also features essays by former Cherokee Principal Chief Wilma Mankiller, Oklahoma First Lady Kim Henry, novelist Billie Letts, Prima Ballerina Maria Tallchief and OU Basketball Coach Sherri Coale, among many others.
“We brainstormed about Oklahoma women that we knew or knew of who have interesting stories to tell,” Taylor said. “We wanted to make sure that our contributions were a mix of well-known and new voices, and we wanted a diverse representation of professions, races, perspectives, lifestyles and backgrounds.”
“Voices from the Heartland” is available at the RSU Bookstore on the RSU campus in Claremore, at bookstores across the state and online at amazon.com and www.voicesfromtheheartland.com. For more information about the book signing, call the RSU Bookstore at (918) 343-7847.