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University of Iowa News Release


Oct. 16, 2007

UI's Kopelson reads from 'Sedaris' at 'Live from Prairie Lights" Oct. 29

University of Iowa English faculty member Kevin Kopelson will read from "Sedaris," his new book about the phenomenon of American writer David Sedaris, at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29, in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City.

Listen live via the Writing University Web site at The free event will also be recorded for broadcast on the "Live from Prairie Lights" series, originating on UI radio station WSUI-AM 910.

Hour-long Iowa Public Radio "Live from Prairie Lights" productions, hosted by Julie Englander, air at 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturdays, and 7 p.m. Sundays on WSUI-AM 910 in Iowa City, WOI-AM 640 in Ames and KRNI-AM 1010 in Cedar Falls.

Stephen McCauley, author of "The Object of My Affection," commented: "When you're laughing aloud at David Sedaris' every sentence, it's easy to miss the more serious side of what he's up to. Fortunately, Kevin Kopelson has come along to guide readers through the work of the best and most subversive social satirist in America."

Misty Rhodes wrote for the Houston Press blogs, "Known for his satirical, autobiographical stories, author-performer-playwright David Sedaris has captured the attention of countless readers since his 'SantaLand Diaries' first aired on National Public Radio's Morning Edition in 1992. One of those readers is Kevin Kopelson, a professor at the University of Iowa, whose new book, 'Sedaris,' asks: 'Why do we love Sedaris? And why, for that matter, does he seem to love us back?'

"Kopelson answers these questions as only a professor of English can, through extensive analysis of the author's works. For people who enjoy reading analyses of popular writers (I'm talking to the English professors and students who wish to become writers or professors), you will enjoy each chapter as it explores the people and events that shaped Sedaris as not only an incredible satirist but also as a human being."

Kopelson, who joined the English Department in 1992, specializes in critical theory, cultural studies, queer theory and 20th-century literature. He has published numerous articles and four previous books: "Neatness Counts: Essays on the Writer's Desk," "The Queer Afterlife of Vaslav Nijinsky," "Beethoven's Kiss: Pianism, Perversion, and the Mastery of Desire" and "Love's Litany: The Writing of Modern Homoerotics."

His awards include a Rockefeller Foundation Residency in Italy, a Camargo Foundation Residency in France, a Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Fellowship at Harvard University and a Mellon Fellowship in the Humanities at the University of Pennsylvania. He was selected UI Faculty Scholar for 1997-2000.

The English Department is a unit of the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073 (office), 319-430-1013 (cell),