August 29, 2002

Internationally acclaimed writer Salman Rushdie, who became the center of worldwide attention when his novel The Satanic Verses provoked a death sentence against him, will read from his work during The Plutzik Memorial Series at the University of Rochester this fall. He will appear on campus as part of the University's Meliora Weekend celebration in October.

The 41st season of The Plutzik Memorial Series opens with poet John Hollander at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library on the River Campus. Hollander's first collection, A Crackling of Thorns, was chosen by W. H. Auden for the Yale Series of Younger Poets in 1958. Since then, he has published 16 books of poetry as well as eight books of literary criticism and has received the Bollingen Prize in Poetry and a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. He is Sterling Professor of English Emeritus at Yale University.

Salman Rushdie received Britain's prestigious Booker Prize in 1981 for his novel Midnight's Children, which also was named the outstanding Booker Prize-winning novel in the first 25 years of the award. After publication of The Satanic Verses in 1988, a novel seen as blasphemous by many Muslims, Rushdie was forced into hiding for 10 years when the Ayatollah Khomeini called for his death.

Rushdie's reading will take place at 3:15 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, in Strong Auditorium on the River Campus. Because of the large number of visitors to campus that weekend, parking will be off site. More information will be available closer to the event by calling (585) 275-4092. This event is co-sponsored by Wilson Commons/Student Activities Office, the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, the Department of Religion and Classics, the Global Studies Cluster, and the Office of the Dean of the College.

Clayton Eshleman, the author of 12 books of poetry, will read from his work at noon on Wednesday, Oct. 16, in the Welles-Brown Room in Rush Rhees Library. Eshleman is also the author of three prose works and was the founder and editor of two highly regarded literary magazines, Caterpillar and Sulfur. More than 400 magazines have published his writing, and his poetry and translations are in numerous anthologies.

The fall Plutzik Series will conclude with a reading by poet Carl Phillips at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30, in the Welles-Brown Room. Phillips is the winner of the 2002 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Prize as well as the Morse Poetry Prize, the Lambda Literary Award, the Pushcart Prize, an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and an Academy of American Poets Prize.

One of the country's oldest and most prestigious literary series, The Plutzik Memorial Series was established in 1962 to honor the work of Hyam Plutzik, a distinguished poet and Deane Professor of Poetry and Rhetoric at the University. It is administered by the Department of English. Admission to the readings is free. For more information, call (585) 275-4092.