Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

March 25, 2009

Poet Phillis Levin to Present Reading at Whitworth April 8 as part of GetLit! Festival

Festival also to include poetry reading, panel discussion featuring Whitworth professors

As part of the annual GetLit! Festival, the Whitworth University English Department will host a reading by Phillis Levin, a professor of English and poet-in-residence at Hofstra University, in New York. Levin will read from her works on Wednesday, April 8, at 7 p.m. in the Music Recital Hall at Whitworth. A book sale and signing will follow the reading. Admission is free. For more information, please call (509) 777-3253.

Levin has penned four collections of poetry: Temples and Fields (University of Georgia Press, 1988), winner of the Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award; The Afterimage (Copper Beech Press, 1995); Mercury (Penguin, 2001); and May Day (Penguin, 2008). Her poems have appeared in such journals as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, Grand Street, Poetry, The Nation, The New Republic, and The Kenyon Review, and have been published in anthologies such as Poetry 180 (edited by former U.S. Poet Laureate Billy Collins), Poems of New York (edited by Elizabeth Smith), The New Bread Loaf Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry (edited by Michael Collier and Stanley Plumly), and several editions of The Best American Poetry (1989, 1998, and 2009). Garrison Keillor featured her poem “May Day” on “The Writer’s Almanac,” Keillor’s daily program on National Public Radio.

Also as part of the GetLit! Festival, Whitworth English professor and noted poet Laurie Lamon will participate in an After-Hours Poetry Read-Around on Friday, April 17, at 9 p.m. at Europa Restaurant, in downtown Spokane. Admission is free. Lamon, who received the Washington State Artist Trust Award in 2005 and a Pushcart Prize in 2001, is the author of The Fork Without Hunger and Without Wings. Lamon and five other regional poets will read from their works and discuss the poetry of life.

In addition, James McPherson, associate professor of communication studies at Whitworth, will join two other Spokane-area news experts in a panel discussion about recent and future trends in print and digital media. The discussion, "The Changing Media Landscape in the Inland Empire," will take place on Saturday, April 11, at 3 p.m. at Auntie's Bookstore, downtown. Admission is free. For more information, call (509) 838-0206.

The panel will be composed of McPherson, a former newspaper reporter and the author of a new book, The Conservative Resurgence and the Press: The Media's Role in the Rise of the Right; Luke Baumgarten, arts and culture editor at The Inlander; and Cheryl-Anne Millsap, a former columnist and editor for The Spokesman-Review who now serves as editor of Spokane Metro Magazine. Ryan Pitts, assistant managing editor for digital media at The Spokesman-Review, will moderate the one-hour discussion.  

Get Lit! Programs, which includes a literary festival in the spring as well as educational outreach projects throughout the year, seeks to engage members of the Inland Northwest community in a celebration of the written word and to encourage discussion, at all age levels, of literature in its many forms. The Get Lit! Festival invites selected authors to Spokane to share their work and their passion for writing. The weeklong celebration features presentations and readings, writing workshops, panel discussions, visits by authors to K-12 schools and universities, community readings and poetry slams.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The university, which has an enrollment of 2,600 students, offers 53 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Lisa Sem-Rodrigues, program assistant, English department, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3253 or lrodrigues@whitworth.edu.

Jasmine Davey, manager, Auntie's Bookstore, (509) 838-0206 or jasmined@auntiesbooks.com.

Emily Proffitt, public information officer, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or eproffitt@whitworth.edu.

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