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Writers Azar Nafisi and Nikky Finney
Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 4:30 PM
Berlind Theatre, McCarter Theatre Center

On Wednesday, March 13, bestselling author of Reading Lolita in Tehran Azar Nafisi and National Book Award-winning poet Nikky Finney will read from their works as part of the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series of the Program in Creative Writing at the Lewis Center for the Arts. Princeton student Richard Gadsden will also read from his recent fiction work. The reading, beginning at 4:30 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at the McCarter Theatre Center, is free and open to the public.

Azar Nafisi is the author of the international bestseller Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books, which offers a rare glimpse into the lives of women in post-revolution Iran.  It has been translated into 32 languages and has won several awards including the 2004 Non-fiction Book of the Year Award from Booksense and the Frederic W. Ness Book Award .  Her most recent work, Things I’ve Been Silent About: Memories, was published in 2008.  Nafisi is a Visiting Professor at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced Studies. Before emigrating to the U.S. in 1997, she taught at the University of Tehran, the Free Islamic University, and Allameh Tabatabai, earning both national respect and international recognition for advocating on behalf of Iran’s intellectuals, youth, and especially young women.

Nafisi will be introduced by Maaza Mengiste, author of the critically acclaimed Beneath the Lion’s Gaze, and Lecturer in Creative Writing at the Lewis Center.

Nikky Finney has published numerous volumes of poetry, including Head Off and Split (2011), for which she received the National Book Award.  Her other books of poetry include The World is Round  (2005), Rice (1995), and On Wings Made of Gauze (1985).  Known for her commitment to social justice and cultural preservation, Finney has also authored Heartwood (1997), edited The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South (2007), and co-founded the Affrilachian Poets, a writing collective.  She is currently the Guy Davenport Endowed Professor in the Department of English at the University of Kentucky.

Finney will be introduced by Tracy K. Smith, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at the Lewis Center.

The Lewis Center’s Program in Creative Writing is sponsoring this event as part of the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series which provides an opportunity for students, as well as all in the greater Princeton region to hear and meet the best writers of contemporary poetry and fiction.   All readings are free and open to the public and take place on select Wednesdays at 4:30 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center. 

The final reading scheduled in the series will feature Matthew Dickman and Joseph O'Neill on April 17.  In addition, students in the Program in Creative Writing will present readings of their work in May, including seniors who are completing a certificate in the program.

Photos Link:
Photo Caption 1:  Best-selling author Azar Nafisi
Photo Credit 1:   Photo by S.J. Staniski
Photo Caption 2:  Award-winning poet Nikky Finney
Photo Credit 2: Photo by Rachael Eliza Griffiths

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