History Between These Folds: A Reading and Conversation

On December 12th, join the young authors of History Between These Folds and acclaimed writer Kiese Laymon for a special reading and panel discussion, reflecting on the project and the histories the authors will write going forward.

About the Book


"We are rare and we are powerful."
–Student Editorial Board

"If every American book published in 2017 were written by eleventh graders in New Orleans, the world would be more loving."
–Kiese Laymon

"Where I come from will not define the person I am, but will help shape me into what I want to be."
–From "I am From, Who I Am" by Octavia Gordon



In the 2016-2017 school year, 100 11th graders in Eric Parrie's US History class at Carver High School in the 9th Ward collaborated with Big Class and acclaimed writer Kiese Laymon to write a book of their own personal histories. The resulting book, History Between These Folds, collects their work about family, neighborhood, identity, and New Orleans–reconfiguring how we think about ourselves in relationship to broader sweeps of history. 

On May 23rd, 2017, we marked the release of History Between These Folds with a publication party at Cafe Istanbul. Families, friends, and community members came together in support of New Orleanian youth and their powerful writing. On December 12th, we invite you to join us again in celebration of this important book.


Carver Students Publish Book to Document Life in New Orleans (Louisiana Weekly)

Big Class Gives Students a Voice Through New Book (National Association of Black Journalists)

Ninth Ward High School Students Publish Book About Life in NOLA (NOLA Defender)

Free the Memory (Oxford American)

Voices of Educators: Eric Parrie (WWNO)