Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: Noelle.Lemoine@williams.edu
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., September 10, 2013—This year’s Williams Reads program at Williams College features Diana Abu-Jaber’s Crescent. The novel was awarded the 2004 PEN Center USA Award for Literary Fiction, as well as the American Book Award. Abu-Jaber will give a talk at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24, on the MainStage of the ’62 Center for Theatre and Dance. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Tickets are available online at http://62center.williams.edu/62center/ or by contacting the theatre box office at 413-597-2425, Tues.-Sat., 1-5 p.m. A book signing will follow the event.
The lecture is one of the main events for this year’s Williams Reads program, a campus-wide initiative that aims to foster new connections among the members of the Williams College community through a common reading experience. Every year, the Williams Reads Committee works with the Committee on Diversity and Community to select a book that will stimulate community engagement and deepen the understanding of diversity. Books chosen for previous years include Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America, Fun Home, and Invisible Man. Special events, guest lectures, and other activities will continue throughout the year. For a listing of events, see http://sites.williams.edu/williams-reads/.
Abu-Jaber is most recently the author of Birds of Paradise, an Indie Books Pick. Her other publications include the award-winning memoir, The Language of Baklava, the best-selling novel, Origin, and Arabian Jazz, which won the 1994 Oregon Book Award and was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award.
Crescent is a multidimensional love story exploring notions of identity, culture, and home, set in the Arab-American community of Los Angeles.
Abu-Jaber has received multiple degrees in English and creative writing, including a B.A. from the State University of New York at Oswego in 1980, an M.A. from the University of Windsor in 1982, and a Ph.D. from Binghamton University in 1986. A frequent contributor to NPR, Abu-Jaber is a professor and writer-in-residence at Portland State University.
These events are co-sponsored by Williams Reads, the President’s Office, and Claiming Williams. You can learn more about Williams Reads and this year’s book at http://sites.williams.edu/williams-reads/.
For building locations on the Williams campus, please consult the map outside the driveway entrance to the Security Office located in Hopkins Hall on Main Street (Rte. 2), next to the Thompson Memorial Chapel, or call the Office of Communications (413) 597-4277. The map can also be found on the web at www.williams.edu/map