Esther Freier Lecture
Fall 2018: Frank Bidart & Maggie Nelson, in Conversation
We look forward to seeing you at our next free event at the University of Minnesota campus, as the author series that began in 2001 continues to explore literature and the humanities.
Thursday, October 4, 2018
Frank Bidart and Maggie Nelson, in Conversation
7:30 pm, Coffman Union Theater, 300 Washington Ave SE, Minneapolis
An opportunity to share in discussion with two of the most respected and exciting writers in contemporary literature. Frank Bidart is the author Half-light: Collected Poems (2017), an anthology of his collected works for which he won both the 2018 Pulitzer Prize and the 2017 National Book Award for Poetry. He is the author of numerous other collections, including Metaphysical Dog (2013), which won the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award, the 2014 PEN/Voelcker Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Award. Maggie Nelson's works defy classification, ranging between poetry and memoir, theory and criticism. Her latest is The Argonauts, which won a 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism; other titles include Bluets, The Art of Cruelty: A Reckoning, and The Red Parts. In 2016, Nelson received a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship.
The authors will also answer audience questions and sign books. Free and open to the public! No tickets or reservations necessary. All welcome!
For disability-related accommodations, or questions regarding the venue, contact Terri Sutton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 612-626-1528.
About Esther Freier
The Esther Freier literature series hosts two free lectures each year featuring various prize-winning authors, from Zadie Smith to David Mitchell, Louise Glück to Natasha Trethewey.
The literary legacy that Esther Freier envisioned began in 2001, when celebrated novelist and essayist Jamaica Kincaid inaugurated the Esther Freier Endowed Lecture in Literature series. A clinical laboratory chemist and professor, Freier had a deep and profound love for literature and the humanities. She wanted to leave a legacy that would benefit the public and inspire emerging authors. In her will, Freier created an endowment that would bring prize-winning national and international authors to campus for free, public lectures and informal visits with students.
Esther Freier was born in Hibbing, Minnesota, in 1925. She moved to Minneapolis while still a child and spent her entire academic (BS ‘46, MS ‘56) and professional career of 45 years at the University of Minnesota. She co-authored the first paper dealing with quality control in clinical chemistry, winning several awards. When she retired in 1991, she held the only endowed professorship in medical technology in the nation. That year, Freier served as the first woman president of the Academy of Clinical and Laboratory Physicians and Scientists and was re-elected the following year.
Esther Freier was a teacher, friend, and mentor to many. The Department of English is deeply grateful for her generosity to us, the University, and the community.
Previous Freier Lecturers
- April 4, 2018: Young People's Lit Panel with M. T. Anderson, Kate DiCamillo, David Barclay Moore, and Nicola Yoon
- October 25, 2017: Edwidge Danticat
- April 13, 2017: Andrew Solomon
- October, 2016: Claudia Rankine & Marilynne Robinson
- April, 2016: Abraham Verghese
- October, 2015: Jeanette Winterson
- February, 2015: Lynn Nottage
- October, 2014: James McBride
- April, 2014: David Mitchell
- October, 2013: Katherine Boo
- April, 2013: Colum McCann
- October, 2012: Zadie Smith
- April, 2012: Denis Johnson
- October, 2011: Philip Gourevitch
- April, 2011: Natasha Trethewey
- October, 2010: James Salter
- April, 2010: Richard Powers
- September, 2009: Maxine Hong Kingston
- March, 2009: Louise Glück
- October, 2008: Junot Díaz
- March, 2006: Suzan-Lori Parks
- November, 2007: Paul Muldoon
- April, 2007: E. L. Doctorow
- November, 2006: Bharati Mukherjee
- April, 2006: T. C. Boyle
- October, 2005: Philip Levine
- April, 2005: Anna Deavere Smith
- November, 2004: Rita Dove
- April, 2004: A. S. Byatt
- October, 2003: Arnold Rampersad
- February, 2003: Michael Chabon
- November, 2002: Edmund White
- March, 2002: Barry Lopez
- March, 2001: W. S. Merwin
- February, 2001: Jamaica Kincaid