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“Your job is to find what the world is trying to be.”
— William Stafford
The English Department’s rigorous curriculum introduces students to a shared literary tradition while encouraging intellectual independence. Our classes acquaint students with a wide range of British and American literature, teaching students to engage with the texts through close reading and literary analysis. Small class sizes allow students to build close relationships with our dynamic faculty of active scholars and creative writers, and ensure that students receive individual attention during class time and office hours. In the classroom, students participate in an interactive process of discussion and collaborative interpretation. Professors continually challenge students to argue thoughtfully and communicate effectively, both on the page and in real time.
We are a community beyond our classes, sponsoring many literary events open to the public throughout the year. In addition to hosting nationally recognized authors and critics as Mark Edmundson, Geoffrey O’Brien, and Lyn Hejinian, we regularly showcase the scholarly and creative work of our own faculty and students in colloquia and readings. Many students are also involved with the Lewis & Clark Literary Review, a student-produced literary magazine sponsored by the English Department. See Wordsworth, our department newsletter, to learn more.
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The Department of English is pleased to co-sponsor the
Visiting Writer’s Series with Watzek Library.
October 4th, 2016
A Poetry Reading by Ada Limón
Ada Limón is the author of four books of poetry, including Bright Dead Things, which was named a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award in Poetry, a finalist for the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award, and one of the Top Ten Poetry Books of the Year by The New York Times. Her other books include Lucky Wreck, This Big Fake World, and Sharks in the Rivers. She serves on the faculty of Queens University of Charlotte Low Residency M.F.A program, and the 24Pearl Street online program for the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center. She also works as a freelance writer splitting her time between Lexington, Kentucky and Sonoma, California.
November 16th, 2016
A Poetry Reading by John Beer
John Beer is the author of Lucinda: A Poem (Canarium, 2016) and The Waste Land and Other Poems(Canarium, 2010), which received the Norma Farber First Book Award from the Poetry Society of America. He has also edited Poems 1962-1997 by Robert Lax (Wave, 2013). He lives in Portland and teaches creative writing at Portland State University.
December 1st, 2016
A Fiction Reading by Arthur Bradford
Arthur Bradford is an O Henry Award winning writer and Emmy-nominated filmmaker. His writing has appeared in Esquire, McSweeney’s, Vice, Men’s Journal, and many other publications. His first book, Dogwalker, was published by Knopf and Vintage paperback in 2002, and has been translated into ten languages. In 2012 McSweeney’s published Benny’s Brigade, a children’s book. Bradford’s newest book, “Turtleface”, will be published by Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux in February 2015.
January 25th, 2017
A Poetry Reading by James Galvin
James Galvin was raised in northern Colorado. He has published eight collections of poetry, most recently EVERYTHING WE ALWAYS KNEW WAS TRUE (Copper Canyon, 2016). He is also the author of the critically acclaimed prose book THE MEADOW, and the novel FENCING THE SKY. His honors include a Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Award, a Lannan Literary Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has a home and some horses outside of Tie Siding, Wyoming, and is a member of the permanent faculty of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
February 28th, 2017
Marketing, Publicity, and Editing with Mary Bisbee-Beek
For over thirty years, Mary Bisbee-Beek has been immersed in the world of books and literature, serving at different times as editor, publicist, and marketing consultant. She will talk to students about the world of publishing books – and the state it’s in, today. She will discuss what book publicity is, and what a potential career in the literary arena might look like, today, and in ten years.