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University of Iowa News Release


Sept. 9, 2009

International Writing Program presents free events Sept. 18 and 20

The International Writing Program at the University of Iowa will present three free events Sept. 18 and 20, featuring writers in residence from around the globe:

--A panel discussion, "What's in a Name?" at noon Friday, Sept. 18, in Meeting Room A of the Iowa City Public Library.
--A reading, with refreshments, at 5 p.m. Sept. 18 in the Shambaugh House, 430 N. Clinton St.
--A reading at 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 20, in Prairie Lights Books, 15 S. Dubuque St.

Names have always served as markers of familial, ethnic, tribal and national identity. In the Friday panel discussion, four writers in residence will address the questions: What happens when an individual chooses to change his or her name? And what is gained, or lost, when a name becomes a tool for personal expression?

The participants will be Tamil poet and translator Meena Kandasamy from India, physician and fiction writer Hanaa Hijazi from Saudi Arabia, Pakistani filmmaker Azeen Sajjad and Dutch poet Hagar Peeters.

The bilingual Friday afternoon reading at the IWP headquarters will feature poet, journalist and translator Min Htet Maung from Myanmar and South Korean novelist and essayist Kim Soom.

In the Sunday Prairie Lights reading, Croatian poet, essayist and translator Milos Djurdjevic and Jamaican poet Millicent Graham will be joined by poet Erika Jo Brown, a graduate student in the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

Biographical sketches of all the 2009 IWP writers are accessible at

The IWP introduces talented writers to American life; enables them to take part in American university life; and provides them with time, in a setting congenial to their efforts, for the production of literary work. Since 1967, more than 1,200 writers from more than 120 countries have attended the IWP, including Turkish Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk.

Many of the writers are supported through the U.S. State Department and U.S. embassies, while others are funded through a variety of foundations, government councils and bilateral agreements.

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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, Arts Center Relations, 319-384-0073 (office) 319-430-1013 (cell),