Monday, February 20, 2006

Through a Glass Darkly: Sam Lipsyte Reads from His Fiction, February 23

Chestertown, MD, February 20, 2006 — Washington College's Sophie Kerr Committee presents a reading by acclaimed fictionist Sam Lipsyte, Thursday, February 23, at 4:30 p.m. in the Sophie Kerr Room of the College's Miller Library.

The event is free and all are invited to attend.

The author of three books—Venus Drive, The Subject Steve, and Homeland—Lipsyte has received several awards for his sharp, incisive fiction that cuts to the heart of darkness in contemporary life. His collection of short stories, Venus Drive, was selected as one of the top 25 books of the year by The Village Voice Literary Supplement. Homeland, his latest novel, received the first annual Believer Book Award and was recognized as one of the New York Times Notable Books of 2005.

"Lipsyte captures flashes of his characters' addled humanity and smashes a window into their hopelessness . . . It's fascinating to read a writer who can bring you so efficiently to such uncomfortable places," wrote James Hannaham in The Village Voice. Gary Shteyngart observed regarding Lipsyte, "when he turns that gaze inwards I start to understand how we got to be where we are today, as a country and as a people."

Lipsyte was born in New York City in 1968 and grew up in New Jersey. He is a former senior editor of Feed, and the former frontman for the noise rock band, Dungbeetle. His writing has appeared in Open City, New York Times Book Review, Slate, The Quarterly, Mother Jones, Nerve, Spin, and the Minus Times.

The reading is sponsored by the Sophie Kerr Committee, which works to carry on the legacy of the late Sophie Kerr, a writer from Denton, Md., whose generosity has done so much to enrich Washington College's literary culture. When she died in 1965, Kerr left the bulk of her estate to the College, specifying that one half of the income from her bequest be awarded every year to the senior showing the most "ability and promise for future fulfillment in the field of literary endeavor" and the other half be used to bring visiting writers to campus, to fund scholarships, and to help defray the costs of student publications.

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