University of Arkansas, Fayetteville to host author as part of One Book One Community program

University of Arkansas students are shown on the lawn in front of Old Main on the campus in Fayetteville in this file photo.
University of Arkansas students are shown on the lawn in front of Old Main on the campus in Fayetteville in this file photo.


FAYETTEVILLE -- "Sitting Pretty: The View from My Ordinary Resilient Disabled Body" is this year's One Book One Community choice at the University of Arkansas, Fayettevile, and author Rebekah Taussig will be on campus for multiple events this week.

The mom, wife, author, disability advocate, and educator with a Ph.D in creative nonfiction and disability studies -- who has been paralyzed since age 3 -- will be in the Arkansas Union ballroom at 6 p.m. Wednesday to discuss her book, said Lauren Copley Sabon, a teaching associate professor in the Department of Sociology and Criminology who chairs the One Book One Community Committee.

American Sign Language interpreting will be available onsite at this keynote address, light refreshments will be served, and Taussig will be available to sign her book.

The following day, Taussig will be featured at a luncheon in the Union (rooms 509-511) at noon, Sabon said. Co-sponsored by the UA Disability Employee Resource Group, the luncheon is open to students, faculty, staff, and the community, but limited to 50 seats.

One Book One Community has been collaborating with a number of departments and programs across campus to support conversations around the book this fall, she said. "Engagement with the book is up this year, and many people have been spotted across campus and Northwest Arkansas with their books."

A number of groups across campus have been hosting reading circles, and the Writing Studio recently co-sponsored a writing competition for undergraduate students focused on accessibility and belonging, she added. In choosing this book for One Book One Community, Sabon and others hope to spark meaningful conversations around belonging, inclusivity, awareness, and other similar themes.

The book led to Taussig receiving the Hefner Heitz Kansas Book Award in Literary Nonfiction, her writing has appeared in publications from Time to Refinery29, and she's had talks and workshops on disability representation, identity, and community at higher education institutions like the University of Michigan, Yale University, and Davidson College, according to the university. Prior to pivoting to writing, speaking, and consulting, Taussig taught for almost a decade, from high school freshmen to upper-level college classes, and she continues to offer writing workshops.

The book also fits with the university's commitment to ensure access for individuals with disabilities, Sabon noted. As such, those who may need reasonable accommodations should contact her at copley@uark.edu or (479) 575-5560 as soon as possible prior to the event for coordination.

Handicap accessible parking is available in the Stadium Drive Parking Garage with direct access to the Union on levels 2 and 3, and there is direct elevator access to the fifth floor, she added. Parking codes are available by request through Sabon.