Contemporary Writers Series: Robert Penn Warren Exhibit, April 10, 2013, 4pm

The Robert Penn Warren Exhibit:  Keynote speaker: Poet Dave Smith

Written by Professor Tom Douglass, Department of English

The Robert Penn Warren Exhibit at Joyner Library represents some of the finest work in the Stuart Wright Collection and the largest collection of associated Warren material held outside the Beinecke Library at Yale University.  Warren rare and fine print books, typescripts, holograph notes and manuscripts, letters, photographs, and ephemeral documents highlight the life and career of one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Robert Penn Warren (1905-1989) is the only writer to have won a Pulitzer Prize in both fiction and poetry. He was at the center of American literary life during his long and prolific career. Educated at Vanderbilt, University of California at Berkeley, and Yale University where he was also chosen to be a Rhodes Scholar at New College, Oxford, Warren first gained notice alongside the Fugitive Poets of Nashville — John Crowe Ransom, Allen Tate, Andrew Lytle and Donald Davidson, writers who are also represented in the SWC.

Warren (along with Cleanth Brooks) co-founded The Southern Review at the newly built Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, a time and place that would help him conceive All the King’s Men (1946), a novel based loosely on the life Governor Huey Long.  The Brooks and Warren collaborative editions of Understanding Poetry and Understanding Fiction would define how literature would be taught in the American classroom.

Warren was a prolific author of poetry and fiction, but he also became an important voice of American criticism and the national conscience. The 1964 collection of interviews he conducted with leaders of the nascent Civil Rights movement in Who Speaks for the Negro? (1965) included the first interviews with Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, among others, his Jefferson lectures published in Democracy and Poetry (1975) charted the way for a more diverse and democratic representation in American literature.

Recipient of the Bollingen prize, and two-times awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for for Promises: Poems 1954-1956 (1958) and Now and Then (1979), Warren was named the first U.S. Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry in 1986. The SWC includes many manuscripts of his early and later work, and a handful of unpublished poems.

The many prizes of the SWC include manuscripts and published versions of Audubon: A Vision (1969), Brother to Dragons (1953) and (1979), A Place To Come To (1977), Now and Then (1978), Chief Joseph of the Nez Pierce (1983), New Dawn (1983), New and Selected Poems (1985), Portrait of a Father (1988), stage and film versions of All the King’s Men, and several essays – “Why Do We Read Fiction?” and “The Use of the Past,” among others. The hundreds of Warren ex-libris in the SWC display his critical interests and the vital relationship shared with the Fugitive Poets and writers of mid-century — Randall Jarrell, Robert Lowell, Peter Taylor, Eudora Welty, and Katherine Anne Porter. Many of these books also contain personal correspondence and significant marginalia.RPW_screen

Joyner Library and ECU’s Contemporary Writers Series are pleased to present Poet Dave Smith as the keynote speaker for the exhibit. Smith is currently the Elliott Coleman Professor of Poetry at Johns Hopkins University. Influenced by the work of James Dickey, AR Ammons, and Robert Penn Warren, Smith’s poetry chronicles the changing landscape of our country and the changing South. He has authored more than 17 books of poetry including Hawks on Wires: Poems 2005-2010 (2011), Little Boats (2006), and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected PoemsLittle Boats, Unsalvaged: Poems 1992–2004 and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems, 1970–2000,Little Boats, Unsalvaged: Poems 1992–2004 and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems, 1970–2000,Little Boats, Unsalvaged: Poems 1992–2004 and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems, 1970–2000,Little Boats, Unsalvaged: Poems 1992–2004 and The Wick of Memory: New and Selected Poems, 1970–2000, (2000) published by LSU Press and Gray Soldiers (1984) published by Stuart Wright. Formerly editor of The Southern Review (the same literary magazine co-founded by Warren), Smith now serves as editor of the Southern Messenger Poets series for Louisiana State University Press.

New Exhibit in Special Collections Opens April 4th


Please join us for the opening of a new exhibit “Selections from John James Audubon’s Fifty Best Watercolors”.  The reception will honor donors Dr. and Mrs. Rick Webb.  It will feature brief talks by three faculty members on how this collection can be used as a teaching tool in diverse disciplines.
Michael Ehlbeck, MFA, School of Art and Design

Susan McRae, PhD, Department of Biology

Karl Rodabaugh, PhD, Department of History

The exhibit was curated by Paul Goodson, MLS under the direction of Maury York, Assistant Director for Special Collections.

From the Dean

February is the month for love – epitomized by the art on display in the Faculty Art Show and the Valentine books featured in an exhibit in the Teaching Resources Center.  It is also a fitting time to recognize the dedication of the staff and faculty in Joyner Library.  I am proud to work every day with people who have a deep commitment to our shared mission of “connecting people to information and empowering their lifelong learning by developing robust collections, superior services, and people-friendly spaces.”  Joyner Library employees who received the Treasured Pirate award in 2012 are listed in our February enewsletter.  They represent nine departments and were recognized for very different contributions, ranging from the handling of fines to the digitization of collections.  Their work, along with that of our other faculty and staff, often goes without recognition, but is critical to the success of the Library.

On a somber note, at the end of January, one of our staff members, Lynda Werdal, passed away following complications from surgery.  We will treasure our memories of Lynda, including her sweet smile and her ability to always see the best in others.  Lynda was a member of the Interlibrary Loan Services department and helped many faculty and students throughout the university who needed to use materials owned by other libraries.  She was also the long-time advisor of Lutheran Student Ministry.  She will be greatly missed.

Articles in this month’s e-newsletter describe several new services and resources.  Features on a student’s donation of a lithograph to the North Carolina Collection and the Library’s involvement in the Lifelong Learning Program highlight the importance of personal connections.  What better time than February to reflect on the importance of friendship, mentorship and reaching out to others?  I hope you enjoy this issue.  As always, I invite you to contact me with any questions about the Library or suggestions for improvements by e-mail to or by phone at 328-2267.

Happy New Year!

photo courtesy of Joe Barricella

As I write this column, I can see construction workers outside my window and hear the sounds of sawing and drilling.  If you’ve been in Joyner Library recently, you’ve seen the grey construction wall near the entrance.  In March, this wall will come down and the new areas for the Office for Faculty Excellence and the University Writing Center will be revealed.  We’re looking forward to even stronger partnerships with these two groups when that occurs.

Joyner Library published its annual report in December.  The report documents some of the ways the Library provides the foundation for student learning and faculty research as well as valuable cultural and educational opportunities for the ECU community and the region.  Please contact Dawn Wainwright (  if you’d like a print copy of the report.  The report is also accessible here.  And, of course, there is always something new at Joyner.  I hope that you’ll find the current exhibits, upcoming events, database trials, and services described in this month’s newsletter of interest and that we’ll see you in Joyner soon.

One of my favorite parts of my job is talking to faculty, staff and students about how the Library can continue to improve its collections, services, and spaces. I invite you to be part of the conversation by contacting me by phone (328-2267), e-mail ( or in person.  I hope you have a productive and fulfilling spring semester.

Campaign Update for Joyner Library Gallery Space

A new gallery space at Joyner Library will honor East Carolina University alumna and former faculty member Janice Hardison Faulkner. Pictured above, Faulkner browses through photographs that trigger memories of her service to the state of North Carolina following a career at ECU.  (Photo by Cliff Holl

New gallery at Joyner Library to honor Janice Hardison Faulkner

Jan. 7, 2013

By Jeannine Manning Hutson
ECU News Services

A planned gallery and meeting area at Joyner Library at East Carolina University will be named to honor Janice Hardison Faulkner, a university graduate and former faculty member who went on to serve in state government for almost a decade.

The campaign to raise $150,000 toward the total cost of $275,000 for the renovation project began in August. As of early January, more than $124,000 had been contributed to the campaign.

Faulkner said she’s proud to have her name associated with the new project “because it connects the university and the community in a special way.”

“It will provide a facility for up to 150 people to sit down in the gallery and will be available to the public for functions and readings. It’s not necessarily filling a gap, because we do a pretty good job now, but it will put a new twist on it,” Faulkner said.

An open area on the second floor of the library will be renovated to provide gallery space for exhibitions, seminars, conferences and receptions for events such as scholarship announcements.

The interim dean of Academic Library Services said the project is a continuation of the library’s mission. “Joyner Library strives to provide an enriched environment for scholarship, collaboration and interaction,” said Jan Lewis. “We appreciate the opportunity to showcase the talents and hard work of East Carolina’s students and faculty while giving the community the opportunity to experience art, culture and history.”

Faulkner said she likes that the gallery will have easy access for the public – “not buried in a basement somewhere” – and that it is a facility that the university provides for the community.

“And it will encourage art shows, poetry readings and the kinds of activities that lots of people in college expect to engage in,” said Faulkner, who earned her undergraduate and master’s degrees in English from then East Carolina College.

‘Building a nest’

The design of the Janice Hardison Faulkner Gallery allows it to serve as a student study area when not hosting seminars and conferences. The area will have exhibition lighting for the student and faculty art shows that will be housed in the gallery space.

“One of the first things we do when we’re separated from home as college students is to build a little nest, a place that is familiar and comfortable, and meets the requirements you’re looking for like a quiet place to study or a place to put your feet up while you read. So it has an ambiance that is missing from the strictly academic structures (on campus),” Faulkner said.

Faulkner arrived at East Carolina College for the summer session immediately after graduating high school. She joked that it was a way to avoid having to work on her family’s Martin County tobacco farm. “I wasn’t lazy and I didn’t mind working. It was just there was something else out there and I was anxious to know what it was and experience it,” she said.

“My grandfather was so proud to have a granddaughter in college that he left $1,000 in his will, when tuition was $90 per quarter, for me to pay for my education. He paid for the rest of my college degree and the first quarter of my masters,” she said. “He was stingy and everybody speculated what he would do with his money, but I got a pretty good chunk of it.”

The gallery is the first venture of the Joyner Library Advancement Council. The group wanted a project that would reflect the mission of the university and the library by “providing cultural enrichments and powerful inspiration as we work to sustain and improve the quality of life,” said Harry Stubbs IV, chair of the committee.

Stubbs and Dr. Michael Priddy, chair of the council’s fundraising committee, created the plan to honor Faulkner by naming the new gallery after the renovation of the library’s second floor open area. The library has allocated $125,000 from the Verona Joyner Langford Endowment for the project as well.

“Janice Hardison Faulkner has served our university and state with grace and honor. This special place will be a fitting tribute to an outstanding citizen,” said Priddy, who is the former superintendent for Pitt County Schools.

Priddy and Faulkner share a dedication to education and public service.

After earning her undergraduate and master’s degrees at East Carolina and post-graduate work at the Breadloaf School of English in Vermont, Faulkner joined the East Carolina faculty in the Department of English in 1957. She published two English textbooks and numerous articles on folklore, local history, historic preservation and economic development. She was the first chair of the university’s Board of Visitors.

Gov. Bev Perdue presented Faulkner with the North Carolina Award for Public Service during an October ceremony at the N.C. Museum of History. (Contributed photo)

Her love of books is still evident in her home today – a bookcase dominates one wall in her living room, housing works ranging from “Tarheel Politics” and Bill Clinton’s “My Life” to a Norton Anthology of English Literature and an Oxford Annotated Bible. She donated 350 books from her collection to Joyner Library several years ago, she said.

After a notable tenure at ECU, Faulkner became a well-known and highly respected participant in state politics and government. She served as former North Carolina secretary of revenue, secretary of state and commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles. She was known for her hands-on leadership of the agencies.

Faulkner was honored in 2009 as the first female recipient of the Thomas Jordan Jarvis Medal, East Carolina University’s highest service award, during Founders Day events. She is the sixth recipient of the recognition by the university.

In October, Faulkner received the North Carolina Award for Public Service during a ceremony at the N.C. Museum of History.

She’s pleased with the fundraising efforts for the project thus far. “I think it’s been successful as a fundraiser, it has attracted a lot of support, and I think one of the reasons is because it fills a need,” Faulkner said.

And does she see the success of the campaign as a tribute to her years of dedication to the university and the state?

“It is a presumption of the folks in fundraising. I don’t know how to think about that. It’s not modest to be proud; that was one of the things we learned out in the country,” she said with a smile.

“I have been very gratified by the responses of people who I hadn’t thought of in a long time. I like to think the response is driven by the pursuit of a worthy cause.”

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To learn more about the Janice Hardison Faulkner Gallery project, contact Dawn Wainwright at 252-328-4090.

At her home in Greenville, Faulkner expressed her pleasure that the gallery will provide an accessible public place for community functions and cultural activities. (Photo by Cliff Hollis)

ECU’s Joyner Library 5th Graduate Student Art and Design Exhibition Runs Through January 15th

GREENVILLE, N.C. (12/3/2012) – Joyner Library at East Carolina University celebrated the opening reception and award ceremony for the 5th Annual Graduate Student Art and Design Exhibition on November 15th.

This exhibition, held every fall semester, showcases the talent and hard work of ECU graduate students and provides an inspirational learning environment for all students, faculty, and library patrons.  Cash awards were given, with one funded by the Friends of Joyner Library to add original art to the Library’s permanent collection.  Diverse works include paintings and drawings, textile and metal designs, sculpture, photography, pottery, and more.

“The works by the 17 artists participating in this year’s exhibition are inspiring, creative, and thought-provoking.  Joyner Library is excited to host this exhibit and to provide an opportunity for the artists to share their talent with the community and to be recognized for their work,” says Jan Lewis, interim dean of Academic Library & Learning Resources.

C. Barbour Strickland III served as this year’s juror.  With more than 30 years of experience in N.C. arts, Strickland is the owner of FrameMakers, Strickland Art Resources & Gallery, and The Arts Connection website.  He is the former art director of the Greenville Museum of Art and currently serves on boards of art organizations statewide, including as president of the Friends of ECU’s School of Art and Design.

The exhibit runs through January 15, 2013 and is located in the exhibit gallery on the second floor of the library.  The exhibit viewing is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Dawn Wainwright at 252.328.4090.

2012 Winners

College of Fine Arts & Communication Dean’s Merit Award $400
Artist: Audrey Peck
Title: “Bark Necklace”
Medium: Bark, Copper, Steel, Brass, and Paper


Friends of Joyner Library Purchase Award $1000
Artist: Graham Erisman
Title: “Emotions of Burden”
Medium: Cast Iron & Fabricated Steel

Uptown Art Supply and Gallery at UBE $100 Gift Certificate
Artist: Catherine Stasevich
Title: “Pond Life Series: Muddy Bottoms Mug with Brown Bullhead”
Medium: Wood Fired Ceramics

School of Art and Design Director’s Award $400
Artist: Lorraine Turi
Title: “Past Life Portrait # 2”
Medium: Scanogram – Inkjet

Graduate Schools Dean’s Award $300
Artist: Kevin Vanek
Title: “Automatons of Industry”
Medium: Cast Iron

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ECU’s Joyner Library hosts award program for the Michael F. Bassman Honors Thesis Award

GREENVILLE, N.C. (11/28/2012) Joyner Library at East Carolina University will honor the winner of the 2012 Michael F. Bassman Honors Thesis Award, on Dec. 4.

Danielle N. Martin is the winner of the 2012 Michael F. Bassman Honors Thesis Award, which recognizes excellence in research and writing by students in East Carolina University’s Honors College.  The award, in the amount of $500, is sponsored by ECU’s Joyner Library and honors Dr. Michael F. Bassman, associate professor of Foreign Languages & Literatures, formerly associate vice chancellor of the Honors Program, and its first Distinguished Honors Professor.

Martin’s award-winning paper is entitled “The Ever-Changing Social Perception of Autism Spectrum Disorders in the United States.” The paper has been accepted for publication in the peer-reviewed journal, “Explorations: the Journal of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities for the State of North Carolina.”

“Joyner Library maintains a strong tradition of supporting undergraduate research on the ECU campus. The Bassman Award, created with the generous support of Dr. Bassman and the ECU community, allows us to further this important work, says Jan Lewis, interim dean of Academic Library Services.  “We are especially delighted that Danielle Martin is our winner this year, as she exemplifies the very best of ECU, the Honors College and the EC Scholar’s program.”

The award will be presented at a ceremony in Joyner Library on Tuesday December 4, 2012 in the Administrative Conference Room, Room 2409, 2nd floor of the Library.  Dr. Bassman will be in attendance for the program.

This event is open to the public.  For more information, contact Dawn Wainwright at (252) 328-4090.

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