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Award-Winning Writer and Illustrator Alison Bechdel to Deliver Paumanok Lecture at Kumble Theater for the Performing Arts

Lecture and reading to take place on February 23, 6:30 p.m. at LIU Brooklyn


Helen Saffran,Associate Director of Public Relations
LIU Brooklyn,
Long Island University
(718) 488-1419

Alison BechdelBrooklyn, N.Y. – Alison Bechdel, internationally acclaimed lesbian cartoonist and New York Times’ best-selling author and illustrator, will deliver LIU’s annual “Starting from Paumanok” lecture on American literature and culture at the Kumble Theater for the Performing Arts on the LIU Brooklyn campus. Free and open to the public, the event will be held Thursday, Feb. 23, from 6:30-8 p.m.

At the age of 10, Alison Bechdel began keeping a journal, and has been assiduously archiving her own life and times with words and pictures ever since. For a quarter-century, she wrote and drew the comic strip, “Dykes to Watch Out For,” a generational chronicle considered “one of the preeminent oeuvres in the comics genre, period,” by Ms. Magazine.

She is also the author of a graphic novel, “Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic,” published by Houghton Mifflin in 2006. “Fun Home” spent two weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list, won an Eisner Award and was a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist. Time Magazine named it Book of the Year, calling the memoir about Bechdel’s father, “A masterpiece about two people who live in the same house but different worlds, and their mysterious debts to each other.”

In 2008, Bechdel retired her self-syndicated comic strip, “Dykes to Watch Out For,” to write and draw a second memoir, that will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2012. This spring, Bechdel will be a Mellon Fellow at the Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry at the University of Chicago.

"Alison Bechdel is one of the most acclaimed, fearless, innovative and exciting graphic memoirists working today,” said LIU Brooklyn English Professor Jessica Hagedorn. “She will have a lot to say to our students about the power of storytelling."

The lecture takes its name from a Walt Whitman poem that first appeared in the 1860 edition of “Leaves of Grass.” Its title invokes the Native American word for Long Island and acknowledges the University’s geographic and cultural connection to one of Brooklyn’s (and Long Island’s) foremost literary figures.

Since its inauguration in 1983, the “Starting from Paumanok” lecture has featured scholars, playwrights and literary luminaries, including Lynn Nottage, Walter Mosley, Colson Whitehead, Ed Bullins, Edward Said and Elizabeth Hardwick.

This year’s event is funded by the John McGrath Fund and the Mellon Fund and is co-sponsored by the LIU Brooklyn English Department’s MFA Program in Creative Writing, the Voices of the Rainbow reading series (English Department), the LIU Brooklyn Gender Studies program, and Greenlight Bookstore.

LIU Brooklyn is located at Flatbush and DeKalb avenues in downtown Brooklyn. For more information, call (718) 488-1015.

LIU Brooklyn is distinguished by...
dynamic curricula reflecting the great urban community it serves. Distinctive programs encompass the arts and media, the natural sciences, business, social policy, urban education, the health professions and pharmacy, and include the Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, the Ph.D. in Pharmaceutics, the D.P.T. in Physical Therapy and the Pharm.D. in Pharmacy. A vibrant urban oasis in downtown Brooklyn, this diverse and thriving campus offers academic excellence, personalized attention, small class size and flexible course schedules. In 2006, a $45-million Wellness, Recreation and Athletic Center was opened to serve the Campus and the surrounding community. In 2007, the Cyber Café was launched, providing a high-tech hot spot for students and faculty members to meet and eat.

Posted 01/13/2012

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