February 24, 2014 Library of Congress Announces Literary Birthday Celebrations

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Rob Casper (202) 707-5394
Contact: Request ADA accommodations five business days in advance at (202) 707-6362 or ada@loc.gov

The Poetry and Literature Center at the Library of Congress announces its series of literary birthday celebrations for spring 2014, commemorating influential American authors.

All events will occur at noon in the Whittall Pavilion (unless otherwise noted) and will be free and open to the public. Tickets are not needed. The Whittall is located on the ground level of the Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C.

Each event will feature two poets or writers who will discuss the celebrated author and read from his or her work. In addition, materials from the Library’s collections pertaining to the author will be on display.

  • Philip Roth, Wednesday, March 19
    Writers Sam Lipsyte and Howard Norman will read from the work of Roth, and the Manuscript Division and the Rare Book and Special Collections Division will present materials from the Philip Roth Collection.
  • Vladimir Nabokov, Tuesday, April 22
    Writers Dinaw Mengestu and Azar Nafisi will read from the work of Nabokov, and the Manuscript Division will present materials from the Vladamir Nabokov Collection.
  • Countee Cullen, Friday, May 30
    Poets Rowan Ricardo Phillips and Tim Siebles will read from the work of Cullen, and the Manuscript Division will present materials from the Countee Cullen Collection.

The Rare Book and Special Collections Division holds more than 800,000 books, broadsides, pamphlets, theater playbills, title pages, prints, posters, photographs, and medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. More than 100 collections are maintained, including the personal libraries of Harry Houdini and Susan B. Anthony, author collections of Walt Whitman and Hans Christian Andersen, subject collections on gastronomy and cryptography, and generic collections such as dime novels and Bibles. For more information, visit www.loc.gov/rr/rarebook.

The Manuscript Division holds more than 66 million items, including the papers of 23 U.S. presidents, from George Washington to Calvin Coolidge. For more information, visit www.loc.gov/rr/mss.

The Poetry and Literature Center fosters and enhances the public’s appreciation of literature. The center administers the endowed poetry chair (the U.S. Poet Laureate), and coordinates an annual literary season of poetry, fiction and drama readings, performances, lectures and symposia. For more information, visit www.loc.gov/poetry.

The Library of Congress, the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution and the largest library in the world, holds more than 158 million items in various languages, disciplines and formats. The Library serves the U.S. Congress and the nation both on-site in its reading rooms on Capitol Hill and through its award-winning website at www.loc.gov.


PR 14-034
ISSN 0731-3527