The cover of the "Kindred" graphic novel.

RIVERDALE — Scott Community College will hold free events Thursday, Oct. 10, and Saturday, Oct. 12, to celebrate a college-wide reading project.

Last spring, Scott selected the bestselling literary science-fiction novel "Kindred," by Octavia Butler, for its fall course and classroom curriculum. This project spanned the college, including even the math and psychology departments, which showcased the book to measure socio-economic scales and to discuss the impacts of slavery, according to a college release.  

Nearly 35 years after the initial release of "Kindred," the novel was adapted in 2017 to a graphic novel by artists Damian Duffy and John Jennings to draw in new readers.

It tells the story of Dana, a young black woman who is suddenly and inexplicably transported from her home in 1970s California to the pre-Civil War South. As she time-travels between worlds, one in which she is a free woman and one where she is part of her own complicated familial history on a Southern plantation, she becomes frighteningly entangled in the lives of Rufus, a conflicted white slaveholder and one of Dana's own ancestors, and the many people who are enslaved by him.

"Frightening, compelling and richly imagined, 'Kindred' offers an unflinching look at our complicated social history, transformed by the graphic novel format into a visually stunning work for a new generation of readers," according to the release.

The college invited Damian Duffy to speak at two special events, which are free and open to the public:

  • A Storytellers Gallery Reception will take place from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. Thursday in the Read Art Gallery in the college’s library at 500 Belmont Road. Food and drink will be provided, and Damian Duffy will be present to discuss his adaptations and experiences.
  • A public presentation featuring Duffy will take place from 11 a.m. to noon Saturday, Oct. 12, at the Downtown Davenport Public Library, 321 Main St.

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