On Wednesday, October 15, poet Ben Lerner and fiction writer Steven Millhauser 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. The reading, beginning at 4:30 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at the McCarter Theatre Center, is free and open to the public.
Ben Lerner is the author of several full-length poetry collections, including Mean Free Path (2010) and Angle of Yaw (2006), which was a finalist for the National Book Award and the Northern California Book Award. Noting his use of “arresting lines that are comical, anxious and hauntingly true,” Boston Review critic Craig Morgan Teicher described Lerner’s aim in Angle of Yaw to “juxtapose discordant elements of noise such that their collective racket cancels each component out, leaving behind a language purged by negation—refreshed, defiant, and wholly self-aware.”
Lerner’s sonnet sequence, The Lichtenberg Figures (2004), won the Hayden Carruth Award, was chosen by Library Journal as one of the year’s 12 best poetry books, and was a Lannan Literary Selection. His poetry has also been included in the anthologies Best American Poetry, New Voices (2008), and 12×12: Conversations in Poetry and Poetics (2009).
Also a fiction writer and essayist, Lerner’s novels include Leaving the Atocha Station (2011) and 10:04 (2014). He earned a B.A. in political science and an M.F.A. in creative writing from Brown University. He has served as a Fulbright scholar in Madrid and as a Guggenheim fellow. Lerner has taught at the University of Pittsburgh and California College of the Arts.
Lerner will be introduced by Paul Muldoon, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Professor of Creative Writing and Director of the Princeton Atelier at the Lewis Center, and Princeton’s Howard G.B. Clark ’21 University Professor in the Humanities.
Steven Millhauser is the author of numerous works of fiction including Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1997, and Dangerous Laughter, a New York Times Book Review Best Book of the Year. His most recent collection, We Others: New and Selected Stories, won the Story Prize and was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award. In awarding the Story Prize the judges called We Others ”a powerful and intriguing collection of stories, marked by page after page of beautifully written, intelligent and sensitive prose.”
Millhauser is a recipient of the Lannan Award and has been honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work has been translated into fifteen languages. His story “Eisenheim the Illusionist” was the basis of the 2006 film The Illusionist. He currently teaches at Skidmore College and lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Millhauser will be introduced by Chang-rae Lee, author of the recent novel On Such a Full Sea and the Pulitzer Prize finalist The Surrendered, and Professor of Creative Writing at the Lewis Center.
The Lewis Center’s Program in Creative Writing annually presents 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. Other readings scheduled in the 2014-2015 series include:
- Dean Young & Aleksandar Hemon on November 19
- Evie Shockley & Meg Wolitzer on February 11
- A.E. Stallings & Akhil Sharma on March 11
- Rachel Kushner & John Yau on April 15
Readings of student work will also be scheduled as part of the series.
Poet Kevin Young will present the 2014-15 Theodore H. Holmes ’51 and Bernice Holmes Lecture on October 21.