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SOUTHEASTERN’S WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH SPOTLIGHTS
AUTHORS ELLEN GILCHRIST, ANGELA JACKSON
HAMMOND – Two acclaimed writers – National
Book Award-winning author Ellen Gilchrist and poet-playwright Angela Jackson
– will share and discuss their works during the third week of Southeastern
Louisiana University’s celebration of March as Women’s History Month.
Gilchrist, whose more that 20 books
include the 1984 National Book Award winner “Victory Over Japan” and her
latest collection of essays, “The Writing Life,” will present a reading
and answer audience questions at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 15, at the Columbia
Theatre for the Performing Arts.
A book signing, sponsored by the area
chapter of the American Association of University Women, follows the free
presentation. Gilchrist also plans to conduct a writing workshop for Southeastern
students and special guests the following morning.
“We are so honored that Ellen Gilchrist
accepted the Southeastern Women’s Coalition’s invitation to speak during
Women's History Month,” said Women’s History Month coordinator Carole McAllister,
a member of the Southeastern English Department faculty. “The ordinary
becomes extraordinary in her fiction.”
McAllister said the voices of Gilchrist’s
female characters “resonate loud and strong and clear. They dance in tune
with whatever life deals them. We find ourselves in these women, our good
selves and our not so good selves. We learn what it means to celebrate
A native of Vicksburg, Miss., Gilchrist
is the author of more than 20 books, including her newest work, "The Writing
Life,” a collection of 50 short essays centered on the transforming magic
of literature and the teaching and writing of it.
A member of the faculty at University
of Arkansas, Gilchrist is currently serving as a writer in residence at
Tulane University and has set many of her novels, short stories, and novellas
in New Orleans and her native Mississippi. A diverse writer, she has been
repeatedly praised by critics for her subtle perceptions, unique characters,
sure command of the writer’s voice, and innovative plotlines. Her works
also include “The Cabal and Other Stories,” “Flights of Angels,” “The Age
of Miracles,” “The Courts of Love,” “In the Land of Dreamy Dreams,” “Drunk
with Love, and “I, Rhoda Manning, Go Hunting with My Daddy.”
Jackson, winner of the 1994 Carl Sandburg
Award for Poetry, will discuss her play, “Shango Diaspora: An African-American
Myth of Womanhood and Love,” at 5 p.m., Thursday, March 17, in Fayard Hall,
Also that day, Jackson will join the
Women’s History Month lecture series in a joint presentation with Celina
Echols, Southeastern associate professor of education. At 12:30 p.m. at
Sims Memorial Library, the women will tell the story of their career journeys
as African American women. Titled “Mississippi Magnolias: Celebrating the
Journey,” the presentation will address issues of gender, race, and culture.
Jackson was born in Greenville, Miss.,
but grew up in Chicago. As an undergraduate student at Northwestern University,
she developed a reputation as a talented writer and became a member of
Chicago’s Organization of Black American Culture Writers Workshop. She
has published numerous collections of poetry and fiction, including “voodoo/Love
Magi,” and “Dark Legs and Silk Kisses,” which was named one of the four
best Chicago books in a competition sponsored by the Chicago Sun-Times.
Her Women’s History Month presentations
are sponsored by the Center for Faculty Excellence.
Echols, a Columbia, Miss., native,
serves on the board of directors for the National Association for Multi-Cultural
Education. Her research focuses on cultural diversity and social equity,
and she recently completed the manuscript, "Still I Rise: Strategies for
Black Academician Survival."
The Women’s History Month’s third week
also includes an original play, “Lyzzi Strata,” by Southeastern theater
instructor Selisa Hue. Scheduled for 7:30 p.m., March 15-16, at Vonnie
Borden Theatre, the “battle of the sexes” comedy is based on Aristophanes’
classic play “Lysistrata” and is set in current day Las Vegas.
On Wednesday, March 16, the “Lyceum
Lights” faculty luncheon at noon at Twelve Oaks will feature remarks on
“Women Affecting Southeastern History” by three retired members of the
Southeastern family: Patsy Causey, vice president for student affairs;
Harriet Vogt, Fanfare director, and Sue Parrill, head of the English Department.
The luncheon is sponsored by the Center for Faculty Excellence. For reservations,
contact firstname.lastname@example.org, 985-549-5791.
The Women’s History Month free lecture
series, held on the library’s third floor, will continue with “Politics
and the Power of Women with Purpose,” by Sheryl Shirley, associate professor
of political science at Plymouth State University, at noon, Monday, March
At 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 15,
Southeastern student Jeanne Northrop of Folsom will present “Living the
Story, Telling the Story: Native American Women.” At noon on Friday, March
18, David Benac will speak on “Taking Charge: Women and the Historic Preservation
Movement.” An assistant professor of history at Southeastern, Benac has
created and oversees the university’s public history program and teaches
courses in United States, public, and environmental history.
For additional information about Women’s
History Month, contact 985-549-2100 or email@example.com.
or visit www.selu.edu/whm05.