February 5, 1998 Actor Teman Treadway to Appear in a William S. Burroughs Program at the Library of Congress

Contact: Yvonne French (202) 707-9191

Actor Teman Treadway will appear in "'The Name Is Burroughs': A Program of Readings from the Work of William S. Burroughs," on Feb. 19 at the Library of Congress.

William S. Burroughs (1914-1997) was an avant-garde novelist associated with the "beat generation." He is perhaps best known today for his novel Naked Lunch (1959). According to John Wakeman and Stanley Kunitz, Burroughs "abominated materialism ... and all other kinds of social conditioning; the machinery and agents of law and order; and every kind of limiting addiction -- to drugs, power ... and also to logic, which he regards as a trap from which Western man must learn to escape."

Naked Lunch, first published in Paris, very quickly acquired a large underground reputation, and, when published in 1962 in the United States after attempted censorship, immediately created a furor among literary critics and authors. Burroughs's influence since then has permeated late-20th century literary culture.

The dramatic reading will feature the work of Burroughs selected and read by Mr. Treadway and directed by Alyn Beauchamp. It will begin at 6:45 p.m. in the Mumford Room on the sixth floor of the James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E. Tickets are not required.

The program is the first in the Library's spring 1998 evening literary series. The poetry and literature reading series at the Library of Congress is the oldest in the Washington area, and one of the oldest in the United States. This annual series of public poetry and fiction readings, lectures, symposia and occasional dramatic performances began in the 1940s and has been almost exclusively supported since 1951 by a gift from the late Gertrude Clarke Whittall, who wanted to bring the enjoyment and appreciation of good literature to a larger audience. The Poetry and Literature Center, which administers the series, is also the home of the Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, a position that has existed since 1936, when the late philanthropist Archer M. Huntington endowed the Chair of Poetry at the Library of Congress. Since then, many of the nation's most eminent poets have served as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress and, after the passage of Public Law 99-194 in 1985, as Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry. The Poet Laureate suggests authors to read in the literary series, plans other special literary events during the reading season and often introduces the programs.

Interpreting services (American Sign Language, Contact Signing, Oral and/or Tactile) will be provided if requested five business days in advance of the event. Call (202) 707- 6362 TTY and voice to make a specific request. For other ADA accommodations, contact the Disability Employment office at (202) 707-9948 TTY and (202) 707-7544 voice.


PR 98-021
ISSN 0731-3527