Donna Macdonald

Donna Macdonald

Convergence Writers’ Weekend focuses on ‘Keeping a Civil Tongue’

All Convergence events take place at Silverton’s Memorial Hall, 203 Lake Ave.

A former chair of the David Suzuki Foundation and a long-time Nelson city councillor will be the two featured speakers at the 5th annual Convergence Writers’ Weekend in Silverton, B.C. June 15 and 16.

The theme of this year’s Convergence weekend is “Keeping a Civil Tongue.”

Presentations will focus on how speakers and writers on all sides of controversial issues increasingly regard those who disagree with them as not only wrong-headed but evil. All Convergence events take place at Silverton’s Memorial Hall, 203 Lake Ave. (Highway 6).

Speaking at 7 p.m. June 15, at an event open to the public as well as Convergence registrants, will be James Hoggan. Besides his work for the Suzuki Foundation, Hoggan chaired Al Gore’s Climate Project Canada. His most recent book is I’m Right and You’re an Idiot: The Toxic State of Public Discourse and How to Clean It Up. Hoggan notes that the demonizing of opponents hampers a community’s ability to solve common problems. His book identifies some approaches to counter this trend.

Also presenting at the June 15 event will be Donna Macdonald, a Nelson city councillor for 19 years before retiring in 2014. Her memoir of life as a civic politician, Surviving City Hall, stresses the importance of local government while emphasizing the need for truthfulness, kindness and civility in public life.

Registrants for Convergence also have the choice to attend one of two writing workshops offered during the day on June 16, as well as attending an arts performance and discussion that evening. Writing workshop leaders are Macdonald and New Denver journalist, historian, novelist, poet and performer Sean Arthur Joyce. Saturday evening includes performances by Joyce, New Denver musician Noel Fudge, and Silverton/New Denver dancer Koko, as well as a discussion of the weekend’s theme by participants.

Registration is now open, at a cost of $45 plus GST. Non-registrants are welcome to attend the Friday night event with admission by donation. More information, including how to register, is available at http://widespot.ca/convergence-writers-weekend/

Deadline for registration is June 1. Deadline for persons wishing feedback on their writing from Joyce in his workshop is May 19.

Convergence is partially supported by the ProVision fund of the United Church’s B.C. Conference, the Columbia Basin Trust, and the Regional District of Central Kootenay’s Area H director, Walter Popoff.

 

James Hoggan

James Hoggan