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Reading and Reception with Spring Ulmer and Megan Mayhew-Bergman

November 14, 2019 4:30-5:30 pm Axinn Center Abernethy Room

Meet new Creative Writing faculty Megan Mayhew Bergman and Spring Ulmer, at this reading and reception. Books will be available for signing, and light refreshments will be served.

Megan Mayhew Bergman, joining the Creative Writing faculty this year in fiction, is the author of Almost Famous Women, Birds of a Lesser Paradise, and Indigo Run. She is a regular columnist for The Guardian, and her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Best American Short Stories, and other publications. She was a fellow at the American Library in Paris and now directs Middlebury’s Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference.

Spring Ulmer, who joined the Creative Writing faculty last fall with a specialty in nonfiction, is the author of Benjamin's Spectacles, The Age of Virtual Reproduction, and the forthcoming Bestiality of the Involved. She lives in Essex, New York, with her son André.

Jean-Sebastien Duvilaire (Babbas) is a Haitian Artist and Houngan who strongly believes in the use of the performing arts to trigger social change. He has trained in African and Afro-Haitian techniques, as well as in classical ballet, modern, and contemporary dance. Babbas has worked with many artists internationally, and travels to teach, choreograph, and collaborate with artists throughout the U.S., the Caribbean, and West Africa. He is the founder of the AfrikAyiti Project, and always wishes to promote Africa together with Haiti in sharing his culture wherever he teaches or performs. He recently moved to Boston, where he has worked with JAE/ Jean Appolon Expressions before deciding to continue his work independently from the company.

For now, Jean-Sebastien continues to teach, travel, and choreograph, pursue study of Vodou, and runs a small cacao processing company in Haiti called Tahomey. His commitment to cultural sustainability is mirrored in his work with Tahomey, which employs and networks small-scale cacao farmers in rural Haiti.

 "Afro-Haitian Dance: technique, culture, and aesthetics"

A master dance class with Jean-Sebastien Duvilaire and live drumming

Mahaney Center for the Arts Room 110 November 5th from 1:30-2:45pm. 

"Reclaiming Vodou: its Powers, Aesthetics, and Beauty, through Music, Dance, and Ritual"

Come share in "A Ritual for Peace: the Aesthetics of Haitian Vodou", where Houngan Jean-Sebastien Duvilaire and his spiritual family "Sosyete Nago" directed by Manbo Marie Evans will invite people into a traditional vodou-style prayer in Creole and Vodou language, with live drumming, song, and dance. White attire is encouraged. 

Coltrane Lounge November 5th from 7-10pm

“To be, or not to be, I there’s the point.” Actors’ Voices in the 1603 first edition of Hamlet?

November 5, 2019 4:30-6:00 pm Axinn Center Room 229

Poetry Reading by Bill Dodd

Nov. 4, 2019  4:30-6:00 pm Axinn Center - Abernethy Room

Bill Dodd was born in Lancaster, U.K., and studied at Oxford University. He now lives in Tuscany, Italy. For over forty years he was a Professor of English Literature in the universities of Bologna and Siena. In 1987-88 he taught at the University of California in Santa Cruz as visiting professor. He has published many studies of Shakespeare’s plays (King Lear, Othello, Measure for Measure, Hamlet, among others), focusing above all on the theory of Shakespearean character and the nature of dramatic dialogue. He has also written on romantic and modern poets (including Keats, Eliot, Lawrence, and Edwin Muir). He has recently published two volumes of poetry: Sightings (2015) and Voicings (2018).

Reading and Talk by Rick Bass

October 10, 2019 4:30-5:30 pm Axinn Center - Abernethy Room

Author of more than 30 books, Rick Bass’ fiction has received O. Henry Awards, numerous Pushcart Prizes, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters, among others. A collection of short fiction, The Hermit’s Story (2003), was named a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year, and another collection, For a Little While (2016) won the prestigious Story Prize. He has had numerous stories and nonfiction works included in Best American anthologies. Various of his books have been named New York Times as well as Los Angeles Times Notable Books of the Year, and a New York Times Best Book of the Year. 

His most recent nonfiction book, The Traveling Feast (2018), chronicles the author’s epic pilgrimage to thank the writers who influenced his life and work—including Peter Matthiessen, Denis Johnson, John Berger, David Sedaris, Joyce Carol Oates and Terry Tempest Williams, among others—by cooking them supper. 
His stories, articles and essays have appeared in The Paris ReviewThe New YorkerThe Atlantic MonthlyNarrativeMen’s JournalHarper’sNew York Times Sunday Magazine, the Washington PostTin HouseOrion, and many others. He has served as a contributing editor to AudubonOnEarthField & StreamBig Sky Journal, and Sports Afield. Bass is on the faculty at the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program, and has taught creative writing for more than 30 years.

Poetry Reading with Frank Bidart

May 2, 2019 at 4:30 pm
Twilight Auditorium 101

Frank Bidart is widely considered one of the finest poets at work in English.  His Collected Poems won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 2018.  He teaches at Wellesley College.

A Book Reading and Discussion with Emmanuel Iduma

April 10, 2019 @ 7:00 pm Robert A Jones '59 House, Conference Room

A Stranger's PoseWith a mediative foreword by Teju Cole, Emmanuel Iduma’s beguiling writing in A Stranger's Pose takes the reader on a journey across 23 African cities. It is part memoir, part, travel writing and part meditation. His sensuous storytelling is interspersed with over 40 mesmerising black and white photographs from acclaimed contemporary African photographers, including a description of his encounter with the famed photographer Malick Sidibe. In his talk and reading at Middlebury College, Iduma will discuss notions of form, genre, and the complex dance between photography and text.

Women's History Month: A celebration of Poetry presents a Poetry Reading by: 
Karin Gottshall 

Thursday March 14th @ 12:15
Chellis House - Sushi lunch will be served

Assistant professor in ENAM, and director of the New England Young Writer's Conference at Bread Loaf. Her most recent book of poems is The River Won't Hold You (Ohio State University Press, 2014), and her work has appeared in The New England Review, FIELD, The Kenyon Review, and many other journals.

Philip Dean Walker

Tuesday February 26, 2019 at 4:30pm
Axinn 103 at 4:30pm

Philip Dean Walker is a Class of 2000 graduate of Middlebury College (B.A. American Literature). He received his MFA in Creative Writing from American University in 2013. His first book, At Danceteria and Other Stories was cited by Kirkus Reviews as a "Best Book of 2017," received their coveted Kirkus Star in their review, and was a semi-finalist for the Kirkus Prize for Fiction in 2017. Described by famed author Andrew Holleran as, "a highly original meditation on the '80s like nothing else you've read...with odd conjunctions, great wit, and the shadow of AIDS, making these stories deceptively light and strangely disturbing." His new collection, Read by Strangers was again cited by Kirkus Reviews as a "Best Book of 2018" and also received the Kirkus Star in their review which noted that, "Walker’s scintillating stories crackle with frank sexuality and deadpan comedy. There’s a satirical edge to many of them, but they are always grounded in prose that’s realistic but extraordinarily vivid and even nightmarish." He lives in Washington, D.C. and is at work on a new book.

Saturday Feb. 23, 2019
Hepburn Zoo  at 7:30 p.m.
The Play "American Rookie"

American Rookie is a theatrical monologue written and performed by Dipti Bramhandkar.

Playwright’s Note
A racist incident that my mother experienced in early 2018 prompted me to write an autobiographical solo show based on my experiences growing up and living in America after moving from Mumbai to rural Upstate New York. The show brings to life the joy, humor and pain of the assimilation process from mimicking 80s fashion and studying Judy Blume books to constructing a new American persona altogether. Through a series of reflections on Indian and American cultures, I hope to stimulate positive
conversation about the racial biases we all carry, and the disproportionate burden placed on immigrants.
We are living in extraordinary times when the country is struggling and divided over issues of race and identity. This show was difficult to write and even more difficult to share. However, I recognize the importance of adding my voice to the conversation now more than ever. Part coming-of-age tale, part social commentary and part comedy, American Rookie grapples with what it means to be an immigrant at a time when the country can’t stop talking about it. The show was presented to a sold-out audiences in Horse Trade’s Gotham Storytelling Festival (NYC) in November and at Luna Stage (NJ) in January 2019.

Visiting Faculty Fiction Reading: Pamela Erens and Janice Obuchowski

Thursday January 24, 2019 at 4:30
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center

Pamela Erens is the author of the novels Eleven Hours, The Virgins, and The Understory. She has been a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for First Fiction, the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, and the John Gardner Fiction Book Award. Eleven Hours, Erens’s most recent novel, was named a best book of the year by Kirkus, NPR, The New Yorker, Literary Hub, and the Irish Independent. Erens’s essays and criticism have appeared in venues such as Vogue, Elle, The New York Times, Slate, Virginia Quarterly ReviewLos Angeles Review of Books, and The Millions. Reader’s Digest named Erens one of “23 Contemporary Writers You Should Have Read by Now.”

Janice Obuchowski’s fiction has twice received special mention in the Pushcart Prize anthologies—in 2017 and 2019—and her stories have appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, Gettysburg Review, Conjunctions online, LitHub, and elsewhere.  She earned her BA from Cornell University, her MA from the University of Virginia, and her MFA from UC Irvine.  She’s served on the admissions board for the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and as a fiction editor for the New England Review.

Cree LeFavour

Monday November 5, 2018 at 4:30pm
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center
Cree LeFavour's memoir, LIGHTS ON, RATS OUT, was published by Grove-Atlantic in summer, 2017. A writer and academic with a B.A. from Middlebury College and a Ph.D. in American Studies from New York University, she is also the author of several cookbooks, including PORK (2014), James Beard Award Nominated FISH (2013), POULET (2012), and THE NEW STEAK (2008). Her recent book, CHELSEA MARKET MAKERS (2016), is a collaborative effort with Michael Philips. She has also ghost written books and proposals for chefs and artists and has published essays on topics such as Bronte's "Jane Eyre" and Thackeray's "Vanity Fair." Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Times of London, Bon Appetit, and O, The Oprah Magazine.

John Freeman Talk

October 25, 2018 at 4:30pm
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center

Seeing Things

On the ethics of place and space in the era of Instagram

 What does it mean to be where we are, to see it, and to capture and disseminate it? How does seeing things deal with vectors of power, and what stories can't we see? What kinds of experience needs to be told rather than shown, and how do we incorporate this into our own narratives? In a world of granular detail on reporting, and ever shifting planes of politics, this talk will address issues of sight and empathy, and how literature operates in a world driven by the I/eye. What parts of language have we forgotten? 

André Aciman Reading and Talk

October 17, 2018
Twilight Auditorium, Room 101

André Aciman is Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center, CUNY. He is the author of Out of Egypt: A Memoir, False Papers, Alibis, and four novels: Call Me by Your Name, Eight White Nights, Harvard Square, and Enigma Variations. He is the co author and editor of Letters of Transit and of The Proust Project. Aciman is the recipient of a Whiting Writers' Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship as well as a fellowship from The New York Public Library's Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers. He has written for The New York Times, The New Yorker, The New Republic, The New York Review of Books, and has appeared in several volumes of Best American Essays. He is currently working on a novel and a collection of essays.   Presented by the Creative Writing Program.

Creative Thesis Reading 

May 7, 2018
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room

Please join us to hear Creative Thesis writers read excerpts of their work aloud.  Refreshments will be provided.

Poet Mark Doty Reads from His Work

Thursday, April 12, 2018
Warner Hemicycle

Mark Doty is the author of nine books of poetry, including Deep Lane (April 2015)Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems, which won the 2008 National Book Award, and My Alexandria, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the T.S. Eliot Prize in the UK. He is also the author of three memoirs: the New York Times-bestselling Dog Years, Firebird, and Heaven’s Coast, as well as a book about craft and criticism, The Art of Description: World Into Word. Doty has received two NEA fellowships, Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundation Fellowships, a Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Award, and the Witter Byner Prize. 

Sponsored by the Creative Writing Program, the Writing and Rhetoric Program, and the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Research.

New England Review’s Vermont Reading Series

April 11, 2018
The Marquis Café/Bar
65 Main Street, Middlebury

New England Review’s Vermont Reading Series is pleased to present poets and fiction writers Didi Jackson, Jodi Paloni, Ben Pease, and Layla Santos.  Co-sponsored by the Vermont Book Shop and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences. Books, beverages, burritos, and other Southwestern dishes will be available to purchase. The event is free and open to the public.

J.C. Ellefson Poetry Reading

Thursday, March 1, 2018
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room

J.C. Ellefson, Poet-In-Residence at Champlain College, will read from his latest book of poems, Under the Influence: Shoutin’ out to Walt (2017). Ellefson has published poetry and short fiction in magazines throughout the United States, Canada, Great Britain, France, and Japan. His first book of poems, Foreign Tales of Exemplum and Woe (2015), draws on his experiences teaching in Shanghai and the Azores. Jim has made his living as a hired hand, a blacksmith, a fiddler, and most recently, running an organic farm in Leicester with his wife Lesley.

(Co-sponsored by the Creative Writing Program and the Writing and Rhetoric Program)

Recent Alumnae Read From Their Books

Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room

A reading by Lauren Markham, ‘06, and Sierra Crane-Murdoch ‘09.5, who return to Middlebury to co-teach their J-term class, Writing What You Don’t Know: The Ethics and Craft of Narrative Journalism.

Recent alumnae as well as Middlebury Fellows in Environmental Journalism, Markham and Murdoch have recently published or are about to publish major books.

Markham’s The Faraway Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life, was hailed by the New York Times as “impeccably timed, intimately reported and beautifully expressed.” 

Crane-Murdoch’s book, scheduled to be published by Spiegel & Grau in 2019, covers a murder and the consequent transformation of the Mandan Hidatsa Arikara Nation of the Fort Berthold Reservation, located in North Dakota’s fracking fields.

NER Out Loud

Friday, November 10, 2017
Kevin P. Mahaney ’84 Center for the Arts, Dance Theatre

Live readings of prose and poetry from the New England Review, read by Middlebury College students from Oratory Now, will be followed by a S’More Readings reception with student magazines Blackbird, Frame, and Translingual. All selections originally published by New England Review in 2017. Sign language interpretation will be offered.  For more information, please visit

Laurie Sheck

Thursday, October 26, 2017
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Room 229

Laurie Sheck will be giving a multimedia presentation about her recently published hybrid fiction: Island of the Mad, which involves the discovery of a mysterious notebook and the life of Dostoevsky and is set in the Venetian lagoon. She is also the  author of A Monster’s Notes (2009), centered around the un-named “monster” in Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, still alive in the 21st century. A Monster’s Notes was nominated for the International DUBLIN Literary Award and was named one of the 10 Best Fictions of the Year by Entertainment Weekly. Sheck has also written five books of poems, one of which, The Willow Grove, was a Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.  She’s taught at Rutgers, Princeton, and Columbia and is currently a member of the core MFA Writing Faculty at the New School.

A Reading and Conversation with Hisham Matar

Thursday, October 19, 2017
Twilight Auditorium

Hisham Matar will discuss his Pulitzer prize winning book The Return: Fathers, Sons and the Land In Between. Matar was nineteen when his father was kidnapped and taken prisoner in Libya. Twenty-two years later, after the fall of Gaddafi,  Matar was able to return to his homeland for the first time. In this heart-breaking, illuminating memoir he describes his return to a country and a family he thought he would never see again.  Hisham Matar’s debut novel In the Country of Men was published in twenty-nine languages and won numerous international prizes as well as being shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Guardian First Book Award. His second novel, Anatomy of a Disappearance, was published to great acclaim in 2011. He lives in London and New York.

Diana Matar: State of a Nation - Photography and Police Violence in America

Thursday, October 19, 2017
Twilight Auditorium

For the past year, artist Diana Matar has been photographing at over 200 sites where police violence has occurred in America for a project entitled “This Violent Land”.  In this lecture Ms. Matar will speak about how she uses her camera to question not only the romantic photographic interpretation of the American dream, but also the nation’s acceptance of violence against its citizens at a time of deep social and political change. Highlighting the practicalities of her extensive research methods and referencing previous works and other artists, this lecture will look at how photography can respond to both history and our contemporary political reality.

NER Vermont Reading Series

Monday, October 16, 2017
Marquis Theater Café, Middlebury

Come down for poetry and prose, tacos and tequila, at the next event in New England Review’s Vermont Reading Series. Poets Rob Hardy, April Ossmann, and Lizzie Apple, and essayist Jericho Parms will read from their new work in the Marquis Theater Café on Monday, October 16 at 7 pm. Come early and fill your plate at the Marquis Theater’s Southwest Cafe, which will open just for this event, at 65 Main Street, Middlebury, VT.

NER’s Vermont Reading Series is co-sponsored by the Vermont Book Shop and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. Books, beverages, and burritos will be available to purchase. The event is free and open to the public.  For more information, please visit

Thinking of Teaching? A Discussion with Khalid Tellis, ’13

Monday, October 9, 2017
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Abernethy Room

Before coming to Middlebury Khalid graduated from Eaglebrook and Loomis Chaffee; after Middlebury he served with Teach for America in Mississippi; then taught at Amistad Academy, a renowned charter school in New Haven, Connecticut. He will be receiving his M.A. in Education from the Johns Hopkins University School of Education in the coming months. At Taft, Khalid teaches four sections of English and works with the debate team.

Shakespeare's Songs

Saturday, September 30, 2017
Chateau Grand Salon

An afternoon of art songs by the Bard re-imagined for the music parlor by Schubert, Quilter, Coleridge-Taylor, Finzi and Stanford. Jack DesBois '15.5, bass, and Mal Chase, piano, present a delightful program of songs from Shakespeare's plays. The Bard of Avon knew the dramatic power of music and wielded it skillfully throughout his works. However, very few scores or indications of his songs' settings survive, leaving posterity to guess at the tunes he intended for his words - or to write new tunes altogether. Actor, singer, and Shakespeare enthusiast Jack DesBois offers some of his favorite songs from the plays in their conjectured original settings alongside reworkings of the same texts by the masters of 19th and 20th century art song. Free and open to the public.

Anne Carson: Lecture on the History of Skywriting

Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Twilight Auditorium

Anne Carson is a major poet, one of the finest at work in the English language, and acknowledged as such throughout the world.  She is also a gifted translator of Greek drama.  In her presentation at Middlebury, called “A Lecture on the History of Skywriting,” she will present a combination of lecture, poetry, and video, performed by herself and Robert Currie.  It should make for an exciting and original event.

NER Vermont Reading Series

Monday, April 17, 2017
51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury

Fiction writers Glen Pourciau and Genevieve Plunkett, poet Bianca Stone, and Middlebury senior Hannah Nash, representing the student-run Frame magazine, will read from their recent work. More information can be found here.

Dan O'Brien, reading from his poetry

Thursday, March 16, 2017
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Abernethy Room

Dan O'Brien, award-winning playwright and poet, is author of the play "The Body of an American," poetry collections "War Reporter" and "Scarsdale," and two opera libretti. He graduated from Middlebury College majoring in English and Theater, received an MFA at Brown University, and has taught and done residencies at many institutions including Princeton, Williamstown Theater Festival, and Sewanee Writers' Conference. He lives in Los Angeles.  Presented by the Creative Writing Program.  Co-sponsored by the Department of Theatre, the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and the Department of English and American Literatures.

NER Out Loud

Friday, February 24, 2017
Kevin P. Mahaney '84 Center for the Arts, Dance Theatre

In the tradition of Public Radio International’s “Selected Shorts,” students from Oratory Now will read selections from the New England Review (NER) literary magazine in this third annual live performance of “NER Out Loud”. The event will be followed by a “S’more Readings” reception with representatives of several student literary magazines who will read from their work. Both events are free and open to the public. Sign language interpretation will be offered.  For more information, please visit

NER & Creative Writing Program Welcome J. M. Tyree '95

Thursday, January 26, 2017
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Abernethy Room

NER nonfiction editor J. M. Tyree will read from and discuss his recent book Vanishing Streets: Journeys in London, an illustrated travelogue of some of London's most curious locations. As he wanders deleriously through the city's streets, Tyree encounters the spectres of Alfred Hitchcock, Graham Greene, the pioneers of the British Free Cinema Movement, and many others. Vanishing Streets bridges the past and the present as well as the real and the imaginary, offering a fresh perspective on "the world's most visited city."

Tyree is the nonfiction editor of New England Review, a graduate of Middlebury College ('95), and coauthor of Our Secret Life in the Movies. He has contributed to Sight & Sound, The Believer, Film Quarterly, and the British Film Institue's Film Classics series of books. Tyree currently teaches as Distinguished Visiting Professor at VCUarts in Richmond, Virginia.

Billy Collins Poetry Reading

Thursday, December 8, 2016
Mead Chapel

Former United States Poet Laureate Billy Collins is the author of 13 volumes of poetry, including his new collection, “The Rain in Portugal,” due out in October. Included among the many honors he has received are fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. Collins is admired for poems that are by turns humorous, poignant, provocative, and uplifting, and his reading to a packed Mead Chapel in 2006 remains immensely memorable for those who were present that day. After his reading, Mr. Collins will take questions from the audience and will sign copies of his books.

Free. All are welcome. *Please note: No late seating for this performance.

Sponsored by: Offices of the President, Provost, and Vice President for Student Affairs; The Academic Enrichment Fund; Atwater, Brainerd, Cook, Ross, and Wonnacott Commons; Department of English and American Literatures; the Charles P. Scott Center for Spiritual and Religious Life; and the Creative Writing Program.

Poet Alison Prine Reads New and Published Work

November 29, 2016
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Abernethy Room

Alison Prine’s debut collection of poems, Steel, won the Cider Press Review Book Award and was released in January 2016. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Virginia Quarterly Review, Shenandoah, Green Mountains Review, Hunger Mountain, and Prairie Schooner among others. She lives in Burlington, Vermont where she works as a psychotherapist.  Presented by the Creative Writing Program.

A Reading by Noy Holland '83

Thursday, November 10, 2016
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Room 229

Holland is the author of three widely acclaimed story collections and a novel, “Bird.”  She was described by The New York Times as “a master of the domestic.”  Holland teaches in the MFA program at the University of Massachusetts.  Presented by the Creative Writing Program.

New England Review Presents Fiction, Poetry, and Translations

Monday, October 24, 2016
51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury

NER is pleased to present authors Jensen Beach and Eugene Mirabelli in fiction, poet Elizabeth Powell, and student translator Bernardo Andrade. They will all read from their recent work.  Please click here for more information.

Light refreshments will be served, and books, cocktails, and other beverages will be available to purchase. Co-sponsored by the Vermont Book Shop and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, this event is free and open to the public.

Poet and Translator Fiona Sze-Lorrain

October 3, 2016
51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury

New England Review is pleased to present, along with partners in the departments of Chinese and Literary Studies, the amazingly accomplished and versatile poet, translator, and zheng harpist Fiona Sze-Lorrain. She’ll read from and discuss her new collection of poetry, The Ruined Elegance, and her translations of Chinese poetry, in particular Sea Summit, the new collection by Yi Lu.  Reception with light refreshments at 7 pm; reading begins at 7:30. Books, cocktails, and other beverages will be available to purchase. The event is free and open to the public.

Creative Thesis Reading

May 12, 2016
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center at Starr Library

Students who wrote creative theses this year will read excerpts of their work.

Exploding Cannons: Linton Kwesi Johnson and the Caribbean Poetic-Political Tradition

April 19, 2016
McCardell Bicentennial Hall 219

David Austin is the author of Fear of A Black Nation: Race, Sex and Security in Sixties Montreal, winner of the 2014 Casas de las Americas and winner of the silver medal at the 2014 Independent.  Mr. Austin teaches in the Humanities, Philosophy, and Religion department at John Abbott College in Montreal and is currently working on a book that explores the intersection of poetry, theatre, and social change.

This lecture will discuss the work of British-Jamaican poet Linton Kwesi Johnson in relation to Caribbean literary and left traditions. 

NER & Creative Writing Program Welcome Rick Barot

April 7, 2016
Adirondack House, Coltrane Lounge

Rick Barot will be reading from his award-winning new book of poetry, Chord.  In addition to being the poetry editor of New England Review, Barot directs the Rainier Writing Workshop, and has published three books of poetry with Sarabande Books: The Darker Fall (2002), Want (2008), and Chord (2015).

Poetry Reading: Jay Parini

April 5, 2016
Davis Family Library, Harmon Reading Room, Lower Level

Jay Parini will read from his NEW AND COLLECTED POEMS, 1975-2015 - a book that brings together "all of the poems of the last four decades I would like to preserve," as Parini writes in his introduction.  Reception to follow. 

NER Vermont Presents Jennifer Grotz, Sydney Lea, and Janice Obuchowski

March 14, 2016
51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury

NER Out Loud

March 4, 2016
Mahaney Center for the Arts, Robison Hall

Six Middlebury students will read selected pieces published in NER in 2015, accompanied by an ASL interpreter.  Readers include August Rosenthal '17, Mariah Levin '16.5, Jabari Matthew '17, Kathleen Gudas '16.5, Steven Medina '17, and Sally Seitz '17.  Following the event, join us for a "S'more Readings" reception. 

Reading, by New Yorker staff writer William Finnegan

February 23, 2016
Axinn Center at Starr Library, Abernethy Room

William Finnegan is the author of Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life; Cold New World: Growing Up in a Harder Country; A Complicated War: The Harrowing of Mozambique; Dateline Soweto: Travels with Black South African Reporters; and Crossing the Line: A Year in the Land of Apartheid.  He has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1987.  He has won numerous journalism awards, including two Overseas Press Club awards since 2009, and in 2007 he served as a visiting reporter for the Middlebury Fellowships in Environmental Journalism.  He lives in New York.

February 18, 2016

First Folio Festival

4:30pm, Thursday, February 18th
Mahaney Center for the Arts, Museum of Art, and Seeler Dance Studio

Join us for gallery talks, live performances, and refreshments celebrating the museum exhibition First Folio! The Book That Gave us Shakespeare.  At 4:45pm and 6:15pm join professors Timothy Billings and James Berg for First Folio gallery tours in the Museum of Art.

December 3, 2015

12:30pm, Thursday, December 3rd Room 229, Axinn Center at Starr Library

Shakespeare's "Bad" Quartos: Voices from the Past

Bill Dodd presents an examination of original Shakespeare texts - so called "bad quartos" printed during Shakespeare's lifetime - for fascinating traces of original theatrical practices.

December 1, 2015

4:30pm, Tuesday, December 1st Room 219, Axinn Center at Starr Library

Bill Dodd Poetry Reading

Since retiring from teaching English Literature in Italian universities, Bill Dodd has lived in a small village in Tuscany surrounded by oak forests. He divides his time between writing poetry and laboring with his wife on her flower farm, enjoying encounters with the many creatures who visit them there. He will be reading from his collection of poems, Sightings.

November 16, 2015

Eleanor Henderson Reading from her Work

4:30pm, Monday, November 16
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center

Henderson reads from her first novel, Ten Thousand Saints (Ecco 2011), and discusses its film adaption, written and directed by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini and released in the summer of 2015.  The film will be screened on November 14 at 5:30pm in Dana Auditorium. 

November 9, 2015

NER Reading with Three Vermont Authors: Castle Freeman Jr., Kathryn Kramer, and Rebecca Starks

7:00pm, Monday, November 9 
51 Main at the Bridge, Middlebury

The NER Vermont Reading Series and Vermont Book Shop present three writers reading from their fiction, memoir, and poetry.  Books and beverages will be available to purchase.

November 5, 2015

Ryan D'Agostino '97 Reading from The Rising

4:30pm, Thursday, November 5
Room 103, Franklin Environmental Center at Hillcrest

Award-winning journalist, Ryan D'Agostino '97 reads from his critically-acclaimed book The Rising: Murder, Heartbreak, and Resiliance in an American Town.  Following the reading and a Q & A, D'Agostino will sign copies of his book, which will be available for purchase.

November 4, 2015

Meet the Press Presents Ryan D'Agostino '97

4:30pm, Wednesday, November 4
Room 220, Bicentennial Hall

Ryan D'Agostino '97, editor-in-chief of Popular Mechanics, will deliver the first Meet the Press lecture of the year: "How to Be a Reporter: Old-Fashioned Journalism in the Digital Age."

October 27, 2015

Brittany Cavallaro Reading from her Work

4:30pm, Tuesday, October 27
Abernethy Room, Axinn Center

Brittany Cavallaro '09 published her prize-winning first collection of poems, Girl King, earlier this year, and her first young adult novel, A Study in Charlotte, will appear in 2016.  She won a National Endowment for the Arts poetry fellowship in 2014, and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

July 22, 2015

A Summer Reading with Michael Coffey, Penelope Cray, and Rebecca Makkai

The NER Vermont Reading Series and the Vermont Book Shop are pleased to present Michael Coffey, Penelope Cray, and Rebecca Makkai, who will read from their poetry and fiction at Carol's Hungry Mind Café. From as far as Chicago and as near as Shelburne, these three writers represent an extraordinary range of literary imagination. Books will be available for signing.

7:00pm, Wednesday, July 22nd
Carol's Hungry Mind Café

April 2, 2015

Colm Tóibín Reading from his Work

Colm Tóibín is an eminent Irish novelist and critic who has attracted a wide international audience with such works as The Master, Brooklyn, The Testament of Mary, and Nora Webster.  He teaches at Columbia University and frequently writes for The New York Review of Books.

4:30pm, Thursday, April 2nd
Twilight Auditorium

March 10, 2015

A Reading from Please Do Not Remove, with Karin Gottshall, Gary Margolis, Angela Palm, and David Dillon

New England Review and Middlebury College's Special Collections and Archives are pleased to present a reading from Please Do Not Remove: A Collection Celebrating Vermont Literature and Libraries.  The book's editor, Angela Palm, and three contributors - David Dillon, Karin Gottshall, and Gary Margolis - will read from and discuss selections from the anthology.  A reception will follow, and copies of the book will be given as a door prize.  Free.

4:30pm, Tuesday, March 10th
Davis Family Library, Special Collections and Archives Room 101

March 5, 2015

Jody Gladding Poetry Reading

Jody Gladding's newest poetry collection is Translations from Bark Beetle (Milkweed Editions, 2014).  Her other books include Rooms and their Airs (Milkweed Editions) and Stone Crop (Yale University Press).  Recent poems have appeared in Ecopoetics, Orion,, and other journals.  She lives in East Calais, VT, teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts and translates French.  Her work includes object poems and sit-specific installations that explore the places where landscape and language converge.

4:30pm, Thursday, March 5th
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room

February 27, 2015

Mirrored Resonance: Sinophonic English Poetry, Poetics: Pedagogy

Dr. Jonathan Stalling will explore several permutations of Chinese-English interlanguages as they lead into his Sinophonic English opera (Yingelishi) before turning to a new work he is calling Mirrored Renaissance: The SinoEnglish Rime Tables. In this new project, Stalling draws upon Classical Chinese phonetics to create a novel algorithm, which has now transcribed over 130,000 English words into "Sinographic English," along with new 3D digital learning environments designed to teach accurate English pronunciation through Chinese characters.

12:15pm, Friday, February 27th
Axinn Center, Room 232

February 24, 2014

NER Out Loud

In the tradition of public radio's Selected Shorts, enjoy this evening of original prose and poetry from the New England Review literary magazine, read aloud by Middlebury College students.  Join the readers and organizers for a "s'more readings" reception after the event, including contributions from student literary magazines.

7:30pm, Tuesday, February 24th
Mahaney Center for the Arts, Concert Hall

January 22, 2015

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

This event will feature Karin Gottshall and Michael Katz.  Karin Gottshall's new book, The River Won't Hold You, won the Ohio State University Press/The Journal Award in poetry.  Michael Katz recently published The Kreutzer Sonata Variations and is currently working on a translation of Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment.

7:00pm, Thursday, January 22nd
Carol’s Hungry Mind Cafe

January 12, 2015

Reality Hunger: A Conversation with David Shields and Robert Cohen

An exploration of communication, miscommunication, mass culture and non-fiction - who owns ideas?  What are the distinctions between fiction and non-fiction?  Are traditional modes of expression obsolete given the velocity of digital culture?  This conversation is a reframing of the debate between creative non-fiction, memoir, and the relevance of the novel.

4:30pm, Monday, January 12th
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room 

November 17, 2014

Shahin Parhami: Self-Representation in Film

Award-winning Canadian/Iranian documentary filmmaker Shahin Parhami will speak on self-representation in film.  A reception in Brainerd Commons will follow from 6:30--7:30pm.

4:30 pm, Monday, November 17th
Robert A. Jones '59 House, Conference Room

October 28, 2014

Poet Kerrin McCadden Reading

Award-winning Vermont poet Kerrin McCadden will read new work as well as poems from her book, Landscape with Plywood Silhouettes.

4:30 pm, Tuesday, October 28th
Axinn Center, Abernethy Room

 October 23, 2014

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Three Vermont writers read from their work: Emily Arnason Casey, Kathryn Davis, and Diana Whitney.

7:00 pm, Thursday, October 23rd
Carol's Hungry Mind Cafe

 October 2, 2014

Guest Lecturer: Lazare Bitoun

Lazare Bitoun, a professor of foreign languages, an editor of foreign literature and a translator of American novels will speak about his journey and career.

4:30 pm, Abernethy Room, Axinn

Presented by the Creative Writing Program 

January 16th, 2014

New England Review Vermont Winter Reading

Jay Parini, April Ossman, Ryan Walsh and Middlebury student Ryan Kim read from recent work.

December 2, 2013

Harriet Scott Chessman reads from her novel The Beauty of Ordinary Things.

4:30 pm, Abernethy Room, Axinn

Co-sponsored by the Scott Center

October 14th, 2013

D.T. Max reads from his biography Every Love Story Is A Ghost Story;  A Life of David Foster Wallace.

4:30 pm, Twilight Auditorium

September 26th, 2013

Daphne Kalotay reads from her fiction

4:30 pm, Abernethy Room, Axinn

April 25th, 2013

Maurice Kenny
The Saranac Lake poet reads from his book Molly Brant about the dashing and influential Mohawk figure of the colonial era, and other poems.

4:30 pm, Abernethy Room, Axinn Center

Co-sponsored by the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference

April 18th, 2013

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Thomas Kivney, Eliza Gilmore, Henriette Lazaridis Power and Major Jackson.

7:30 pm, Thursday, April 18th
Carol's Hungry Mind Cafe

April 17th, 2013

Ian Pounds
Undestroyed:  One Man's Journey to Afghanistan

4:30 pm
RAJ Conference Room

Co-sponsored by the Bread loaf Writers' Conference

February 26th, 2013

Visiting Poet Karin Gottshall reading.

January 31st, 2013

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Eileen Brunetto, Jon Mathewson, Julia Shipley and Jacob White.

November 27th, 2012

Alison Bechdel, award-winning graphic novelist

Dykes, Dads, and Moms to Watch Out For: A Talk by Graphic Memoirist Alison Bechdel

Co-sponsored by the Axinn Center at Starr Library Initiative, the First-Year Seminar Program, the Creative Writing Program, the Department of Film and Media Culture, and the Department of English and American Literatures. 

November 14th, 2012

Kathryn Davis, author of six novels, Labrador, The Girl Who Trod on a Toad, Versailles, and The Thin Place.  She has been the recipient of the Kafka Prize, The Morton Dauwen Zabel Award from the Academy of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the 2006 Lannan Award for Fiction.

November 7th, 2012

Michael Collier,
Director of the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Former Poet Laureate of Maryland

October 11th, 2012

Bianca Stone, Poet and Visual Artist

April 3rd, 2012

David Mungello, Professor of History, Baylor University

Western Queers in China:  Flight to the Land of Oz

April 19th, 2012

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Joan Aleshire
Arthur Bloom
Kristin Fogdall
Kerrin McCadden

Congratulations to ENAM Professor Dan Brayton on the publication of his new book, Shakespeare's Ocean:  An Ecocritical Exploration.

April 3rd, 2012

Django Paris, Assistant Professor of Language and Literacy at Michigan State

Language across Difference:  Toward Culturally Sustaining Pedagogies in Changing Urban Schools

Co-sponsored by the Center for the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity, the Education Studies Program, the Office of the Dean of the College, the Office of the Provost, and Wonnacott Commons.

March 9th, 2012

Rick Bass

The noted environmentalist discusses selected readings from previously published works and new work.

Co-sponsored by the Program in Environmental Studies and Environmental Affairs.

Congratulations to ENAM Professor Cates Baldridge on the publication of his new book, Prisoners of Prester John;  The Portuguese Mission to Ethiopia in Search of the Mythical King, 1520 -- 1526.

March 5th, 2012

Emily Bernard, Associate Professor, University of Vermont

Interracial Intimacy, or The Trouble with Friendship

Co-sponsored by the Center for the Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity;  The Program in American Studies.

March 6th, 2012

Award-winning poet C. Dale Young reads from his latest book, Torn.

Co-sponsored by the Creative Writing Program; the Abernethy Lecture Series; the Academic Enrichment Fund; the Office of the Dean of the College; the Pre-Med Society; Chellis House and Cook Commons.

February 21st, 2012

David Damrosch, Ernest Bernbaun Professor of Comparative Literature, Harvard University

From Gilgamesh to Genesis

Co-sponsored by:  the Program in Comparative Literature; the Program in Literary Studies; The Departments of English & American Literatures, German, Italian, Religion, Classics, French and Chinese; the Academic Enrichment Fund; the Tillinghast Fund and Cook, Ross, Wonnacott and Brainerd Commons.

February 20th, 2012

Jacob Weisberg, Executive Editor of Slate Magazine

Government Without Newspapers

(Part of the Meet the Press Lecture Series)

February 14th, 2012

NER Vermont Reading Series

"Will Write for Love," with Addison County writers Jennifer Bates, Karin Gottshall, Carolyn Kuebler, Christopher Ross, Jeffrey Stauch, Karla Van Vliet, and David Weinstock.

January 19th, 2012

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Readings from Stephen Kiernan, Chloe Joan Lopez, Daniel Lusk and Neil Shepard.

November 10th, 2011

Lucas Farrell

The poet and 2003 Middlebury graduate reads from his award-winning collection, The Many Woods of Grief.

November 10th, 2011

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Readings from Sydney Lea, Ellen Dudley, Gloria Estela Gonzales Zenteno and Leath Tonino.

November 2nd, 2011

Brett Millier

ENAM Department Chair and Reginald L. Cook Professor of American Literature will give a talk:  "A Middlebury Dickinson:  The Poems of Ellen Kimberly Lane."

(The Carol Rifelj Faculty Lecture Series).

October 18th, 2011

Shannon Cain

The award-winning short story writer reads from her latest collection, The Necessity of Certain Behaviors.

Co-Sponsored by the New England Review and the Program in Creative Writing.

October 15th, 2011

Billy Collins Reading

As part of Fall Family Weekend celebrations, the former Poet Laureate will read from his latest collection, Horoscopes for the Dead.

September 15th, 2011

The Middlebury Campus interviews our new Visiting Poet, Karin Gottshall.

May 9th, 4:00 pm

ENAM Barbecue at Atwater Dining!

May 5th, 2011 at 4:30pm

Senior Creative Writing Thesis students read from their projects.

Karin Gottshall is our new visiting poet!  Ms. Gottshall is the author of Crocus (2007) and the chapbook Flood Letters (2011).  She will be teaching ENAM 175 in the fall.

April 19, 2011, at 7 pm

New England Review Vermont Reading Series

Four Vermont writers -- Kathryn Kramer, Kellam Ayres, Castle Freeman Jr. and Ted Gilley -- will read from their work.

ENAM Professor Kathryn Kramer (Corinth) is the author of three novels, most recently Sweet Water. She has taught at Middlebury College since 1997.

Kellam Ayres (Middlebury) is a librarian at Middlebury College and a graduate of the Bread Loaf School of English.

Castle Freeman Jr. (Newfane) is the author of four novels, most recently All That I Have, and a regular contributor to Vermont Life.

Ted Gilley (Bennington) is a freelance editor and writer. His book of short stories, Bliss, won the 2009 Prairie Schooner Fiction Prize.

March 22nd 2011

Rebecca Laroche, Chair of the Department of English, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

Our Bodies, Our Gardens:  Arthur Stacie's Dropsy, Shakespeare's Iago and the Common Knowledge of Plants

Co-sponsored by Environmental Studies.

March 16th 2011

Jay Allison

The producer of NPR's "This I Believe" speaks as part of the "Meet the Press" series.

March 9th 2011

Karin Gottshall

The poet and ENAM Visiting Lecturer reads her new work.

February 24th 2011

Dealing with Uncertainty

ENAM professor Dan Brayton speaks as part of the Howard E. Woodlin Environmental Studies Colloquium Series.

February 22nd 2011

Congratulations to ENAM professor Dan Brayton!

Professor Brayton has been awarded the Northeast Modern Language Association Book Prize for his book Shakespeare's Hungry Ocean: Ecocriticism, Early Modern Culture, and the Marine Environment, forthcoming from the University of Virginia Press.

NeMLA is the northeast regional body of the Modern Language Association.

February 15th 2011

Rick Bass

The noted environmental writer reads from his latest book

Co-sponsored by the Program in Environmental Studies and The Academic Enrichment Fund.

November 11th 2010

Rob Cohen

Being a Jewish Writer

Sponsored by the Hillel Academic forum

October 13th 2010

John Irving

Co-sponsored by the Program in Women's & Gender Studies, Chellis House, the Creative Writing Program and Wonnacott Commons.

September 29th 2010

Howard Frank Mosher

Transforming History into Fiction:  The Story of a Born Liar

September 22nd 2010

Dan Brayton

The Middlebury College Lecture Series presents:

Whales in the West:  A Creaturely History

September 7th 2010

Ian McEwan

The Booker Prize winner reads from his new book, Solar.

April 30th 2010

Jennifer Grotz

A poetry reading

Co-sponsored by New England Review, the Breadloaf Writers' Conference and Cook Commons.

April 15th 2010

Lauret Savoy

Provenance Notes:  Readings and Reflections on Nature Writing, Race, and Geology

Lauret Savoy is Professor of Geology and Environmental Studies, Mount Holyoake College.

Co-sponsored by Environmental Studies, Geology, and the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity.

March 30th 2010

Michael Mewshaw

The journalist discusses his new book, Between Terror and Terrorism; An Overland Journey Across North Africa.

March 10th 2010

C. K. Williams

The Pulitzer Prize winning poet reads.

January 4th 2010

Steve Mentz

Tasting Salt:  Human Bodies and the Oceanic Environment in Shakespeare and Early Modern Literature

Steve Mentz is Associate Professor of English at St. John's University.

November 5th 2009

David Barber

The poet reads from his collection, Wonder Cabinet.

David Barber is poetry editor of The Atlantic magazine and 2009-10 Robert Frost Fellow in Poetry.


Department of English & American Literatures