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Novelist-Critic Susan Sontag Will Read from Her Work and Present McKinney Prizes to Student Writers

March 27, 2001

Troy, N.Y. — Susan Sontag, renowned critic, novelist, playwright, film director, and human rights activist, will read from her work on Thursday, April 5, at 8 p.m. in Room 3303, Sage Building.

Her reading will honor the winners of the 60th annual McKinney Contest, presented to the best undergraduate and graduate writers and multimedia artists at Rensselaer. The awards recognize achievement in fiction, drama, poetry, essays, and electronic media. The reading is free and open to the public.

Since 1941, the McKinney Contest has been administered and judged by the faculty of the Department of Language, Literature, and Communication. This year, LL&C has joined with the New York State Writers Institute in a partnership that will continue to bring top writers to future McKinney events. Additional Rensselaer sponsors are the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Office of the Provost, the Gorgon, the Vice President for Student Life, and Friends of Folsom Library

Sontag’s books include four novels, “The Benefactor,” “Death Kit,” “The Volcano Lover,” and “In America”; a collection of short stories, “I, etcetera”; a play, “Alice in Bed”; and six works of non-fiction, including “Against Interpretation,” “On Photography,” and “Illness as Metaphor.”

From 1987 to 1989, Sontag served as president of the American Center of PEN, the international writers’ organization dedicated to freedom of expression and the advancement of literature.

Among Sontag’s many honors are the National Book Critics Circle Award for “On Photography” (1977). A member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1979, Sontag was named a MacArthur Fellow in 1990, and “In America” won the 2000 National Book Award for fiction.

Contact: Patrick Kurp
Phone: (518) 276-6531
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