In-store Signing with Ben Beard, author of The South Never Plays Itself

Event Image: 
Image shows red background with event details in bold print and photo of Beard. Also pictured is the cover for featured book and the event date of 8/7/21 from 1-3 pm

Ben Beard will be signing copies of The South Never Plays Itself. This signing will take place in the Malaprop's Cafe area and we will have copies of the book on hand. Join us! 

Since Birth of a Nation became the first Hollywood blockbuster in 1915, movies have struggled to reckon with the American South--as both a place and an idea, a reality and a romance, a lived experience and a bitter legacy. Nearly every major American filmmaker, actor, and screenwriter has worked on a film about the South, from Gone with the Wind to 12 Years a Slave, from Deliverance to Forrest Gump. In The South Never Plays Itself, author and film critic Ben Beard explores the history of the Deep South on screen, beginning with silent cinema and ending in the streaming era, from President Wilson to President Trump, from musical to comedy to horror to crime to melodrama. Beard's idiosyncratic narrative--part cultural history, part film criticism, part memoir--journeys through genres and eras, issues and regions, smash blockbusters and microbudget indies, to explore America's past and troubled present, seen through Hollywood's distorting lens. Opinionated, obsessive, sweeping, often combative, sometimes funny--a wild narrative tumble into culture both high and low--Beard attempts to answer a haunting question: what do movies know about the South that we don't?

Ben Beard is a writer and librarian. He is the co-author of This Day in Civil Rights History and the author of Muhammad Ali: The Greatest and King Midas in Reverse. In the 2000s, Beard reviewed movies and wrote features for InSite Magazine, King Kudzu, and, where he also worked as an editor. Beard, a native of Georgia who spent his formative years in the Florida Panhandle and Alabama, currently lives in Chicago with his wife and three children.

Event address: 
Malaprop's Bookstore/Cafe
55 Haywood St
Asheville, NC 28801
The South Never Plays Itself: A Film Buff's Journey Through the South on Screen Cover Image
ISBN: 9781588384010
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: NewSouth Books - December 15th, 2020