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Pulitzer prize-winner Ayad Akhtar at ECU Oct. 13

akhtar_author_photo_by_nina_subin-hi-resNC Pulitzer Program at ECU

The Contemporary Writers Series of East Carolina University presents Pulitzer-prize-winning playwright Ayad Akhtar, October 13, 2016, on the university campus. Scenes from his Pulitzer drama Disgraced (2012) will be performed by ECU Theatre students at McGinnis Theatre followed by an onstage interview and audience Q&A. During the day, Mr. Akhtar will visit classes, meet with student groups, give a radio interview, and talk of work in progress. His play Disgraced dramatizes the tension in American multicultural society, the racial and ethnic prejudices that have grown at an alarming rate in post 9-11 America, and offers the pathos necessary for change.  His visit is sponsored by the Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences, the Dept. of English, the Ledonia Wright Cultural Center, and the NC Humanities Council statewide program “NC Pulitzer: The Power of Words” see:

blue-circle-clear-backgroundAkhtar is an American actor and writer born in New York City and reared in Wisconsin. Educated at Brown and Columbia University, Akhtar has also written the award-winning play The Invisible Hand (2014) and American Dervish (2012) a novel published by Little Brown. He is working on his second novel.

The McGinnis Theatre event at 4 pm is free and open to the public. Registration not required. Schedule of other events TBA.


CWS Veterans Writing Workshop, March 25-27


Veteran poet and essayist Brian Turner, author of Here, Bullet (2005), Phantom Noise (2010), and My Life as a Foreign Country (2014), will be the keynote speaker for the CWS Veterans Writing Workshop on 25-27 March 2015. His talk on Wednesday evening of March 25th (7:30 pm) at the East Carolina Heart Institute auditorium will concern his memoir about his experiences as infantry team leader for the 3d Stryker Brigade Combat Team in Iraq (2003-2004) and the challenges facing returning veterans. On Thursday, Turner along with poet Ilyse Kusnetz and former NC poet laureate Joseph Bathanti, photographer and CWS book artist Linda Fox, and ECU faculty member Bob Siegel will conduct a series of workshops for veterans interested in telling the story that needs told. These workshops welcome both beginners and those with experience to journal writing, fiction, poetry, drama, and visual expression. All veterans and veteran family members are welcome to register. The free workshops are sponsored by Operation Re-Entry North Carolina, Pirate Veterans, Office Student Transitions, and the Office of the Provost.

One aim of the workshop is to begin work that can be compiled into a new publication representing the voices of ECU veterans. Submissions are due beginning August 1, 2015.

Events for the week of Sherman Alexie’s visit

Sherman Alexie’s visit to ECU is just over a month away! We would like to announce some additional events that will occur during the week preceding Alexie’s talk. At 7:00 pm on Thursday, March 21, Dr. Daniel Richter will give a lecture entitled “Native Peoples and the Battle of Nooherooka.” This will take place in ECU’s Hendrix Theater and is free to the public. Dr. Richter is the Roy F. and Jeannette P. Nichols Professor of American History at the University of Pennsylvania.

On Saturday, March 23, there will be an ECNAO Powwow at ECU’s Minges Coliseum. This event will take place from 12-6pm.