As part of the Souls of Black Folk Symposium offered at UNC’s Bull’s Head Bookstore, writer Touré will be reading excerpts from and signing copies of his new collection of short stories titled, The Portable Promised Land. Touré, a Brooklyn native, is best known for his work as a contributing editor for Rolling Stone magazine, writing cover stories on Lauryn Hill, DMX and Alicia Keys, to name a few. He has also written for the Village Voice, Playboy, Vibe and The New Yorker. In his first published collection of fiction writing, he creates Soul City, the “black utopia.” In this place, Touré creates characters like the preacher Right Revren Daddy Love and Falcon Malone, a basketball player with magical Air Jordans. The Portable Promised Land is written both as a homage to African-American culture and a commentary on the definition of being black in today’s America. The event begins at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 30. Call 962-5060 for more information.

– Melissa McEvoy