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News Release

Award-Winning Writer Stephanie Powell Watts to Speak at Moravian College

“The State of the American Short Story” a Reading and Discussion - December 4

Stephanie Powell Watts Bethlehem, Pa., November 19, 2013— Award-winning writer Stephanie Powell Watts will visit Moravian College for a reading and a talk, “The State of the American Short Story,” on Wednesday, December 4, at 8:00 p.m. Watts is associate professor of English at Lehigh University. She was one of ten recipients of the Whiting Writers’ Award in last month by the Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation. The program will be held in the UBC room in the Haupert Union Building. The public is welcome to attend and admission is free of charge.

Watt’s debut short story collection, We Are Taking Only What We Need, also received the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence in January of 2013. We Are Taking Only What We Need has been frequently honored in the past year. O magazine named the collection as one of 2013’s Best Summer Reads. It was one of two finalists for The Hemingway Foundation /PEN Award, as well as a finalist for the Chautauqua Prize, the John Gardner Short Story Award, the Foreword Review Prize, USABookNews.com Best Books and was on the long list for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize. It has been listed as one of the best books of 2012 by The New Yorker, The Kansas City Star, and other publications.

Watts’s work chronicles the lives of young African-Americans who come from, or live near, the “dark houses out on tangled dirt roads on the fringes of the county.” Her stories draw on her experiences in fast food and factory jobs, and as a Jehovah’s Witness minister, to explore themes of loss, faith, and hope, giving voices to communities usually unheard.

Sponsored by the Arts & Lectures Committee and the English Department, and hosted by the students in Dr. Joyce Hinnefeld’s English 343Z (American Fiction after World War II) class.

The Haupert Union Building is located near the corner of Monocacy and Locust Streets in Bethlehem, Pa. Moravian College encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, please contact Joyce Hinnefeld at hinnefeldj@moravian.edu by Dec. 2, 2013.

Moravian College is a private, coeducational, selective liberal arts college located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Tracing its founding to 1742, it is recognized as America’s sixth-oldest college. Moravian partners with students to build a strong foundation for their future. Visit the College’s website at www.moravian.edu.