Paper, Scissors, Ash: Defaced Books and the House of Fiction

February 12, 2012 - 3:30 pm

Levitt Center for University Advancement

The 29th Annual Presidential Lecture will be held this Sunday, February 12, at 3:30 p.m. in the Levitt Center for University Advancement.  Garrett Stewart, James O. Freedman Professor of Letters in the Department of English, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, will present this year's lecture, entitled "Paper, Scissors, Ash: Defaced Books and the House of Fiction." Illustrated with more than 200 slides, the lecture will place the writing of Toni Morrison, Nobel laureate and premier re-constructor of America's darkest past, against the backdrop of altered books as a sculptural genre. These are texts defaced by conceptual artists through carving or charring so as to rethink both the material and the cognitive space of reading.

The musical prelude will be a jazz piano performance by Robert Monroe, a senior performance major in the UI School of Music. A reception will follow the lecture in the Wyrick Rotunda, which will also feature an exhibition of conceptual bookworks from the UI Libraries Special Collections.