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Sunday, April 23, 2017

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Seamus Heaney to visit campus April 15-18

Irish poet Seamus Heaney, the 1995 Nobel Laureate in Literature, will visit Princeton's campus Monday through Thursday, April 15-18. As part of his stay here, Heaney will give a public reading and a lecture at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 17, in Richardson Auditorium, Alexander Hall.

During his visit to Princeton, which is sponsored by the Program in Hellenic Studies , the Program in Creative Writing and the Council of the Humanities Heaney will meet informally with faculty and students.

He will also deliver the 11th Helen Buchanan Seeger Lecture in Hellenic Studies at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18, in McCosh 50. The title of his address is "'Hellenize It': Poets, Poems, Predicaments in Greece and Ireland."

In addition, an exhibition in the Firestone Library lobby has been organized in connection with Heaney's visit. Titled "Seamus Heaney: An Irish Poet in Greece," it will be on display until April 30.

Heaney is currently the Ralph Waldo Emerson Poet in Residence at Harvard University and has previously held academic appointments at the universities of Dublin and Oxford.

He has made repeated visits to Greece. His most recent volume of verse, "Electric Light" (2001), includes several poems in which Heaney draws on his observation of the modern Greek society and people, as well as on his knowledge of classical Greek literature.

An abstract of Heaney's talk proposes that "Greece and Ireland have much in common: two nations with ancient mythologies and interrupted histories; two nations that achieved independence through the growth of romantic nationalism, both political and cultural; two nations where a prophetic or at least a public role is always available to the poet." The abstract states that Heaney "will consider the parallel situation of the Greek and Irish poet in modern times and talk about some representative achievements."

Heaney received the Nobel Prize for his "works of lyrical beauty and ethical depth, which exalt everyday miracles and the living past." His many volumes of verse include "Death of a Naturalist" (1966), "North" (1975), "Field Work" (1979), "Station Island" (1984) and "Opened Ground: Selected Poems 1966-1996" (1999). He also has published numerous translations, including "Beowulf: A New Verse Translation" (2000), as well as books of literary criticism and essays.

Contact: Marilyn Marks (609) 258-3601

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