Our guest is Nikesha Elise Williams. We’ll be talking about her forthcoming book, Mardi Gras Indians.
Mardi Gras Indians explores how sacred and secular expressions of Carnival throughout the African diaspora came together in a gumbo-sized melting pot to birth one of the most unique traditions celebrating African culture, Indigenous peoples, and Black Americans. Williams ties together the fragments of the ancient traditions with the expressed experiences of the contemporary. From the sangamentos of the Kongolese and the calumets of the various tribes of the lower Mississippi River valley to one-on-one interviews with today’s Black masking tribe members, this book highlights the spirit of resistance and rebellion upon which this culture was built.
About Nikesha Elise Williams
Nikesha Elise Williams is a two-time Emmy award-winning producer, an award-winning author, and producer and host of the Black & Published podcast. Her forthcoming book, Mardi Gras Indians, will be published by LSU Press on October 5. Nikesha’s latest novel, Beyond Bourbon Street, was awarded Best Fiction by the Black Caucus of African-American Librarians in the 2021 Self-Published eBook Literary Awards. It also received the 2020 Outstanding Book Award from the National Association of Black Journalists. A Chicago native, Nikesha is an Editor at Narrative Initiative and a columnist with JAX Today. Her work has also appeared in The Washington Post, ESSENCE, and VOX. She lives in Florida with her family where she is working on her next novel.