Kiese Laymon | Heavy: An American Memoir

Join us as Kiese Laymon shares his highly-anticipated forthcoming book Heavy: An American Memoir.

It's a searing memoir that explores what the weight of a lifetime of secrets, lies, and deception does to a black body, a black family, and a nation teetering on the brink of moral collapse.

With a commitment to facing hard truths, Heavy charts Laymon’s early experiences of sexual violence and toxic masculinity growing up in Jackson, Mississippi; his complex and often painful relationship to his brilliant mother; first-hand experiences with racism in academia; and the physical manifestations of trauma, including obesity, anorexia, and gambling addiction, on his own body.

Kiese Laymon is a black southern writer, born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. Laymon attended Millsaps College and Jackson State University before graduating from Oberlin College. He earned an MFA in Fiction from Indiana University. Laymon is currently a Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Mississippi. He is the author of the award-winning novel, Long Division and a collection of essays, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America. Laymon has written for numerous publications including New York Times, NPR, Los Angeles Times, Esquire, The Guardian, McSweeneys, Colorlines, The Best American Series, Ebony and many others. He is a contributing editor of Oxford American.