Noted writer spends residency at Bates as Woodrow Wilson Fellow

The noted writer Carolyn Forché, a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow at Bates, will lecture on Art and Witness at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 22 in the Benjamin Mays Center and read from her works at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 25, in the Olin Arts Center in Room 104. The public is invited to attend both events free of charge.

During her weeklong residence at Bates, Forché will participate in writing workshops, give readings and work with individual students and faculty members. Forché describes her work as “poetry of witness.”

A poet with a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and master’s from Bowling Green State University, Forché has held numerous faculty positions and writing residencies at the Helene B. Wurlitzer Foundation, the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Mass.

She has received a series of fellowships and awards including the Lannan Foundation Fellowship, the Artists’ Foundation of Massachusetts Fellowship in Poetry, the Tennessee Williams Fellowship in Poetry, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, the Chicago Review Prize for Poetry, the Emily Clark Balch Prize and several National Endowments for the Arts Fellowships in Poetry.

Some of Forché’s books include The Angel of History (1994), winner of the 1994 Los Angeles Times Book Award; Flowers from the Volcano (1982), translations of poetry of Claribel Alegria; The Country Between Us (1981), the winner of the Lamont Poetry Award; History and Motivation of U.S. Involvement in the Control of the Peasant Movement in El Salvador: The Role of AIFLD in the Agrarian Reform Process 1970-1980 (1980); Gathering the Tribes (1976) and the forthcoming Shooting Back: Photography by and about the Homeless.

The Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellows Program brings leaders in their fields to small liberal arts campuses for a week of classes, informal discussions with students and faculty, and career counseling. The program attempts to gather people from diverse backgrounds and with different points of view in an atmosphere in which they can learn about each other. Writers are included in the program to stimulate greater appreciation of the written word through interaction with the best of contemporary writers.

The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation has developed and conducted programs in higher education since 1945. Nearly 20 colleges have participated in the Visiting Fellows program since 1973.

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