Poets of Amherst: A Conversation with Shayla Lawson and Nuar Alsadir ’92
Host: Jane Wald
Frost Library, Center for Humanistic Inquiry (2nd floor)
Nuar Alsadir ’92 is a poet, essayist and psychoanalyst. She is the author of the poetry collections Fourth Person Singular, a finalist for the 2017 National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry and shortlisted for the 2017 Forward Prize for Best Collection in England and Ireland; and More Shadow Than Bird. Her poems and essays have appeared in numerous publications, including Granta, BOMB, The New York Times Magazine, The Kenyon Review, Ploughshares and Poetry London. She is a fellow at The New York Institute for the Humanities and works as a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst in private practice in New York.
Shayla Lawson is the author of three collections of poetry, including the recently-released I Think I’m Ready to See Frank Ocean. Her work has appeared in print and online at Tin House, GRAMMA, ESPN, Salon, The Offing, Guernica, Colorado Review, Barrelhouse and MiPOesias. She has been awarded fellowships and residences from the Oregon Literary, MacDowell Colony, Yaddo and RACC. She is a member of The Affrilachian Poets and works on The Tenderness Project. She is currently a writer-in-residence at Amherst College.
Jane Wald has been executive director of the Emily Dickinson Museum (owned by Amherst College) since 2006. During that time, she has led efforts to expand public and educational programs and to preserve and restore the two Dickinson family homes and landscape. Her research and publications have focused on the cultural and material context of Dickinson’s life and work. She holds an AB from Bryn Mawr College, an MA from Princeton University and completed advanced study at the College of William and Mary.
Now in its fourth year, Amherst’s annual literary festival celebrates the College’s extraordinary literary life by bringing to campus distinguished authors and editors to share and discuss the pleasures and challenges of verbal expression—from fiction and nonfiction, to poetry and spoken-word performance.
This year’s festival features Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Jennifer Egan, Pulitzer Prize-winning nonfiction author Elizabeth Kolbert, award-winning science writer Charles C. Mann ’76, and 2018 National Book Award for Fiction finalists Jamel Brinkley and Brandon Hobson, among others.