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Laura C. Harris Series

selected reading for visiting lecturers

Samar Yazbek

Samar Yazbek
The Role of Literature, Narrative Non-fiction, and Art in War 
October 10th (Tuesday), 11:45AM - 1:00PM
Click here to register for this virtual event. 

portrait of Samar Yazbek

Denison University’s Laura C. Harris Series welcomes Syrian writer and journalist Samar Yazbek presenting a lecture, The Role of Literature, Narrative Non-fiction, and Art in War  دور الادب والسرد التوثيقي والفنون عامة  في الحرب.

Yazbek was born in Jableh, Syria, near Latakia, in 1970, and studied Arabic literature at Latakia University. Yazbek has been a prominent voice in support of human rights and more specifically women’s rights in Syria. In 2012, she launched Women Now for Development, an NGO based in France that aims at empowering Syrian women economically and socially and at educating children.

In 2010, Yazbek was selected as one of the 39 most promising authors under the age of 40, by Beirut39, a contest organized by the Hay Festival. In 2011, she took part in the popular uprising against the Assad regime, and was forced to exile a few months later. In 2012, she was chosen for the prestigious PEN/Pinter Prize “International writer of courage”, in recognition of her book “In the Crossfire: Diaries of the Syrian Revolution”. She was also awarded the Swedish Tucholsky Prize, and the Dutch Oxfam/PEN Prize, in the following year. In 2016 Yazbek’s literary narrative “The Crossing” was awarded the prestigious French “Best Foreign Book” prize. Her novel, “The blue pen”, was in the third and final selection of the French Femina award, and was shortlisted to the National Book Award, New York under the title “Planet of Clay”.

In 2022, Yazbek was chosen by the Royal Society of Literature as one of its 12 International Writers, along with Anne Carson, Maryse Condé, Yoko Ogawa and Juan Gabriel Vasquez, among others, thereby joining the 12 inaugural awardees of 2021, including Annie Ernaux, David Grossman, Amin Maalouf and Olga Tokarczuk. The RSL international Writers program is an award recognizing the contribution of writers across the globe, celebrating the power of literature to transcend boundaries. New writers are invited to join the program each year.

Yazbek has published two collections of short stories, seven novels, four non-fiction literary narratives. Samar Yazbek lives in France. Her books have been translated in over twenty languages.

Nicole Ektnitphong

Nicole Ektnitphong
Training for Change workshop
October 21st (Saturday), 9:45AM - 5:00PM
Location: Slayter Hall Student Union - Shepardson College Room
Click here to register for this workshop

Portrait of Nicole Ektnitphong

The Laura C. Harris Series presents the Training for Change workshop with Nicole Ektnitphong (facilitator). 

Ektnitphong (she/her) is an organizer, facilitator, and social movement strategist. Her work blends participant-centered education, body-based wisdom, and relationally-grounded lessons from working with a diversity of political campaigns and community-based organizations. She was politicized by the climate crisis as a student and co-led a national network of students that took on the fossil fuel industry by pushing colleges and universities to stop investing in coal, oil, and gas. Having dedicated the last 10 years to the climate justice movement, Ektnitphong’s commitment is in building healthy, effective teams and crafting creative, sharp strategies that allow us to win bold solutions at the scale of the crisis. She is currently a trainer with Training for Change and Momentum Community and works at the Climate Advocacy Lab.

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