Sometimes I’m a latecomer in terms of “finds” (Exhibit A: Kumail Nanjiani. Where have I been?)
But here are my favorite discoveries – latecomer or not – over the past year. I hope you find something interesting among them.
Elizabeth White is the author of 55, Unemployed, and Faking Normal – a title that immediately resonated with me. She also has a TED Talk here. Ms. White is a well-educated woman who went into “economic free fall” after losing her job and all of her assets. And her experience is especially important in these days after our own US Congress has overhauled our tax structure in a way that impacts all of us. Having “money problems” is among the most shameful personal problems in our culture. Ms. White talks about resilience and resource-sharing and living “low to the ground” as we prepare for what could be a lifespan of 80 or 90 years.
Janet Amuh is too young to have much of a social media presence. She is a middle school student in a Chicago suburb whose art is getting a lot of attention in local exhibitions and galleries. I bought one of her paintings at a fall festival as a Christmas gift to myself this year. She is also an extraordinary musician and scholar. Remember her name. She is going to be famous.
Jean-Michel Basquait died at the age of 27 of a heroin overdose in 1988. (Like I said, I am often a latecomer.) But he lives on in his art which is so thought-provoking and weirdly beautiful. Check it out.
Lisa Lucas became Executive Director of the National Book Foundation in 2016 and I love her taste in books. Follow her on Twitter here. Anyone who inspires us to read excellent literature is worth knowing better.
On the cusp of 2018, my hope is that we have all discovered people who amazed/intrigued/sparked new ideas in us. Please share if you are dying to let us know about someone we should know.
And . . . this is my last post of the year. See you in 2018.
Image of Woman in a Hat by Janet Amuh.