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The Student News Site of Bridgewater College


The Student News Site of Bridgewater College


The Student News Site of Bridgewater College


Student Athlete Focus: Kennedy Fauntleroy

Bridgewater College Holds Book Club Leading Up Endowed Lecture with George Johnson

Hunter Aversa
Ally Phalen is a proud member of the book club looking at “All Boys Aren’t Blue.” The books were provided free to those involved with the book club, allowing students easy access to explore diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Bridgewater, Va.- Author of “All Boys Aren’t Blue,” George Matthew Johnson, visited Bridgewater College Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2023 at 7:30 P.M. in Cole Hall, presenting on diverse storytelling and why it matters.

“All Boys Aren’t Blue” is a nonfiction memoir-manifesto published in April 2020, documenting Johnson’s upbringing and personal experiences as a queer Black man in Plainfield, New Jersey.

Leading up to Johnson’s arrival to Bridgewater, students and faculty participated in a book club that met once a week on Mondays and Thursdays, at their convenience, to discuss each of the four acts within the book.

“I have enjoyed my book club experience thus far,”  said senior Jalyn Sneary. “I enjoy how it is faculty and students combined. This part does make it a little tricky because students tend to have more respect for faculty, so they are not likely to interrupt them, but faculty are willing to talk even when someone else has something to say. I have struggled talking because I feel that I don’t get much of a chance to say anything.”

Following the endowed lecture, there was a Q&A as well as a book signing, in which those in attendance were able to speak to Johnson and get a personalized inscription.

“I have quite a few questions and clarifications I would like to ask George when they come to Bridgewater,” said Sneary. “I am excited to hear what they have to say but I am also excited for the personal conversations.”

“All Boys Aren’t Blue” has been censored due to its language and sexually explicit and LGBTQIA+ content. As a result of this, the book has become one of the most banned books in the US.

Banned books refer to books that have had authoritative action taken against them to suppress thoughts, ideas, and information within these books. According to NPR, the book has been banned in at least 29 school districts over the past couple years.

“I enjoy how we are reading a banned book,” said Sneary. “Technically, books cannot be banned but challenged so we are reading a challenged book.”

The endowed lecture feature Johnson, an award winning author, was sponsored by the W. Harold Row Symposium on Reconciliation and was made free to the public and was live streamed the night of the lecture.

“I haven’t read the book but it seems like they are a really knowledgeable person who has had a lot of experiences in life and I am excited to see what they have to say to Bridgewater students,” said junior Elizabeth Melton.

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About the Contributor
Hunter Aversa, Staff Writer
Communication, Technology, and Culture Major, Digital Media Arts Major Junior, Class of 2025 I am a Senior Resident Advisor and plan to pursue a career in law after graduation. I am interested in the field of communications and newswriting.