Beck Lecture Series Begins With Reading by Grace Paley
Posted: September 16, 2003
Denison University's first program in the Beck Lecture Series for 2003-04 will feature a reading by fiction and essay writer Grace Paley at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday (Sept. 23) in the Barney-Davis Hall Board Room. The event is free and open to the public.
Paley is the author of three highly acclaimed collections of short fiction:The Little Disturbances of Man(1959),Enormous Changes at the Last Minute(1974), andLater the Same Day(1985), as well as three collections of poetry,16 Broadsides(1980),Goldenrod(1982), andLeaning Forward(1985). Asked once why she has never written a novel, Paley said, "Art is too long and life is too short."
Paley draws from her experiences growing up in New York City to capture the everyday situations of immigrant Jews, poor blacks, and others who shared her existence in the neighborhoods, playgrounds and subways of her city. Her stories champion realistic characters who, against all odds, take a chance to make "enormous changes at the last minute."
Paley studied at Hunter College and New York University. During the 1960s, she taught at Columbia and Syracuse Universities, and is currently teaching at both City College of New York, where she is writer-in-residence, and at Sarah Lawrence College, where, for the past 18 years, she has taught creative writing and literature.
She received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1961 and an award from the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1970. In 1987 Paley was awarded a Senior Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts, in recognition of her lifetime contribution to literature. She regards herself as a "somewhat combative pacifist and cooperative anarchist." She also has been a feminist and peace activist, dividing her time between New York City and Thetford, Vermont.
Denison University, founded in 1831, is an independent, residential liberal arts institution located in Granville, Ohio. A highly selective college enrolling 2,100 full-time undergraduate students from all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries, Denison is a place where innovative faculty and motivated students collaborate in rigorous scholarship, civic engagement and the cultivation of independent thinking.
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