University of Pittsburgh
August 10, 1999


Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH, August 10 -- The University of Pittsburgh Writing Program will kick off the second season of its Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series with Pittsburgh native John Edgar Wideman Wednesday, Sept. 15, at

8:15 p.m. in 120 David Lawrence Hall, Forbes Ave., Oakland.

Wideman, author of several books including "Two Cities," "Philadelphia Fire," "All Stories are True" and "Brothers and Keepers," is the only two-time winner of the Pen/Faulkner Award. A Rhodes Scholar, Wideman also received the Lannan Fellowship and the MacArthur Award.

In addition to Wideman, the "Contemporary Writers Series" 1999 season will feature an impressive group of poets, novelists and journalists. Lynn Emanuel, director of Pitt's Writing Program, the oldest writing program in the country, coordinates the "Contemporary Writers Series."

The season is free and open to the public. All readings begin at 8:15 p.m. In addition to Wideman, the six other featured writers are:

Wednesday, Oct. 13

Alex Kotlowitz, author of "The Other Side of the River," which won

The Chicago Tribune's Heartland Prize for Non-Fiction, and "There

Are No Children Here," recipient of the Helen B. Bernstein Award for

Excellence in Journalism, the Carl Sandburg and Christopher Awards.

125 Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, Schenley Drive, Oakland.

Thursday, Nov. 11

Carl Phillips, author of "From the Devotions," "In the Blood," for

which he won the Morse Poetry Prize, and "Cortége," a finalist for

the National Book Critics Circle Award and National Book Award.

125 Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, Schenley Drive, Oakland.

Tuesday, Jan. 25

Susan Sheehan, New Yorker staff writer and author of the Pulitzer

Prize winner, "Is There No Place on Earth for Me?" as well as, "A

Welfare Mother and a Prison and a Prisoner."

120 David Lawrence Hall, Forbes Ave., Oakland.

Thursday, March 23 -- Double Feature

Tony Hoagland, author of "Sweet Ruin," which won the Brittingham

Prize in Poetry and "Donkey Gospel," winner of the James Laughlin

Award of the Academy of American Poets.

Dean Young, author of "Design with X" and "Beloved Infidel." He

received two National Endowments for the Arts Fellowships in poetry.

125 Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, Schenley Drive, Oakland.

Monday, April 10

Lee Smith, author of nine novels including "Fair and Tender Ladies"

and "Saving Grace" and winner of the Robert Penn Warren Prize for

Fiction, the John Dos Passos Award for Literature, and a Lila Wallace --

Reader's Digest Writer's Award.

125 Frick Fine Arts Auditorium, Schenley Drive, Oakland.

The "Contemporary Writers Series" is co-sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh's English Department, Western Pennsylvania Writing Project, Africana Studies Program, The Book Center, and the Wyndham Garden Hotel.