• MCollins-SDybek-HDuraj-A

    Featured speakers for the 2014-15 Literary Arts season included Merle Collins, Stuart Dybek, Halina Duraj and Jacob Paul.

  • Food writer Anya von Bremzen, Aristófanes Cedeño, Jacqueline Osherow and Bacca Foundation Visiting Scholar Joan Lipkin were also among the highlights.

  • (l-r) Pianist Lovell Bradford, jazz singer Toni Tupponce and (far left) Armfield Prof. of English Brenda Flanagan performed "Nina Simone & the Civil Rights Movement."

  • Tony Earley, 2014-15 Reynolds Lecturer Marjane Strapani also spoke while Prof. Rebecca Joubin and Gwendolyn Heasley '05 joined together for "Davidson Reads."


Literary Arts

The English Department annually presents 10-12 writers, often winners of Pulitzer Prizes, MacArthur "genius grants," National Book Awards and various other honors. All writers brought to campus work with students personally; all public presentations are free. All events are in the C. Shaw Smith 900 Room of the Alvarez College Union (unless otherwise noted) and open to the public. For more information, please email Kathy Barton at kabarton@davidson.edu or call 704-894-2254.

Please visit this page in August 2015 for 2015-16 Literary events.


Joan Lipkin "Let's Talk About Sex, Baby!"

Bacca Foundation Visiting Scholar and Artist Program

Playwright and director Joan Lipkin engaged Davidson College students in an original theater performance that looked at the issues of sexuality facing college students today. Devised over the course of a week, the performance began with the shooting of an original music video. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Re/Presenting HIV/AIDS.

Anya Von Bremzen

Author of Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing, Anya von Bremzen is one of the most accomplished food writers of her generation; the winner of three James Beard awards and the author of five acclaimed cookbooks. In her talk, she explored the complex and fascinating connection between history, memoir and food spanning the entire Soviet century. (photo ©Jon von Pamer)

Merle Collins

Growing up in Grenada and using the country as a backdrop for her writing, Collins often tells stories of racial, political, cultural and societal concerns. Currently a professor at the University of Maryland, she is the author of three novels, Angel, The Colour of Forgetting and the forthcoming Invisible Streams as well as a collection of short stories and three collections of poetry.

Aristófanes Cedeño

Associate Professor of Spanish Literature at the University of Kentucky, Cedeño's teaching and research interests include natural law, nineteenth-century literature and the Romantic Movement, areas in which he has edited a book and published several papers. He was recently appointed to the Board of Directors of the Kentucky Humanities Council. Cedeño earned his Ph.D. in Spanish Literature from Michigan State University.

Marjane Satrapi

Reynolds Lecture

Born in Iran, studied in Paris, Vienna and Strasbourg, Satrapi took the book and film world by storm with her autobiographical graphic novel, Persepolis. The book, having been named to the "100 Best Books of the Decade," has been translated into more than 40 languages while the film has received over 15 major international awards, including two Cesar Awards-the French version of the Oscars.

Reading & Recital: Nina Simone & The Civil Rights Movement

Edward Armfield Professor of English Brenda Flanagan and nationally renowned jazz singer Toni Tupponce presented a Nina Simone reading and recital. Flanagan read from her upcoming book, Mississippi God Damn, on the year–1967–in which she worked with the international singer Nina Simone. Tupponce, backed by pianist Lovell Bradford, accompanied the reading with songs by Nina Simone that are related to that pivotal year in the history of the modern Civil Rights Movement.

Davidson Reads: Gwendolyn Heasley and Rebecca Joubin

Gwendolyn Heasley '05 is the author of three young adult novels and a digital novella, The Art of Goodbye. Rebecca Joubin is currently the Partin Assistant Professor of Arabic Studies. Her current book, The Politics of Love: Sexuality, Gender, and Marriage in Syrian Television Drama, tells of musalsalat-Arab television dramas or soap operas.

Jacqueline Osherow

A Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Utah, Osherow is the author of six books of poetry, Whitethorn being her most recent. Her work has appeared in numerous anthologies and journals: The New Yorker, The New Republic, Best American Poetry and Norton Anthology of Jewish-American Literature to name a few.

Ali Selim

McGee Distinguished Professor of Film

Described as a poet, a romantic, a hippie and a rebel, Ali Selim, will talk about how learning to break the rules, voice his opinion, and exceed expectations (rather than manage them) leads to a successful career as a filmmaker. His commercial work has won the Cannes Gold Lion and his series works include In Treatment and Gracepoint.

Stuart Dybek

Having written two collections of poetry and five books of fiction, Dybek's The Coast of Chicago was selected as a "New York Times Notable Book." His awards include a PEN/Malamud Award, a Guggenheim fellowship, a MacArthur fellowship and an O. Henry Award.

Tony Earley

Tony Earley is the author of the novels Jim the Boy and The Blue Star. His fiction has earned a National Magazine Award and appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's and Best American Short Stories. Earley was chosen for both The New Yorker's inaugural best "20 Under 40" list of fiction writers and Granta's "20 Best Young American Novelists."