"Fluid Culture" Continues Its Watery Ways with Authors of International Distinction

UB invites you to dive deep into the culture, history and ecology of rivers and oceans

Release Date: March 12, 2012


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Bengali author, Amitav Ghosh

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- "Fluid Culture," the 2011-12 series presented by the University at Buffalo Humanities Institute, continues its presentation of art, literature and media events related to water, globalization and culture with three spring lectures by distinguished international authors.

All are free of charge and open to the public.

On March 19, Amitav Ghosh, the celebrated Bengali author, humanities scholar and a much-translated star in the international literary firmament will be here to present a talk titled "The World's Emporium." It will take place at 7 p.m. in the Lippes Concert Hall, Slee Hall, UB North Campus.

Ghosh, the recipient of dozens of major literary awards, is best known recently for his Ibis Trilogy, a series of novels with enormous historical sweep set on the high seas.

The first novel in the trilogy was the bestselling "Sea of Poppies," shortlisted for the Man Booker prize in 2008. It chronicles the seafaring adventures of an ordinary village woman, a mulatto American sailor, an Indian rajah and an evangelist opium trader in an era before the Opium Wars. The second, published in 2011 to critical acclaim is "River of Smoke," which follows its storm-tossed characters to the crowded harbors of China.

He is also the author of "The Circle of Reason," "The Shadow Lines," "In an Antique Land," "Dancing in Cambodia," "The Calcutta Chromosome," "The Glass Palace" and "The Hungry Tide."

On March 28, Lucia Sa, PhD, professor of Brazilian cultural studies, University of Manchester, will present a talk, "Fluid Stories, Water in Amazonian Literature," at 4 p.m. in 120 Clemens Hall, UB North Campus.

Sa specializes in Brazilian literature and culture, and in particular, the Brazilian city, ethnopoetics and native cultures in Brazil and the South American lowlands.

She is the author of "Rain Forest Literatures: Amazonian Texts and Latin American Culture."

On April 11, Ursula Heise, PhD, professor of English at Stanford University specializing in contemporary American and European literature and literary theory and a leader in environmental criticism since the early 1990s, will present a talk, "Plasmic Nature and Animated Ecologies," at 4 p.m. in 120 Clemens Hall.

Heise, currently a Guggenheim Fellow, has published extensively on the ways in which global environmental crises impact the literatures of the U.S., Eastern Europe, and Latin America

She is the author of "Sense of Place and Sense of Planet: The Environmental Imagination of the Global," which addresses environmentalism, ecocriticism, and globalization.

Her most recent book is "After Nature: Species Extinction and Modern Culture."

She is currently working on "The Avantgarde and the Forms of Nature," which deals with the role of biological form in works of the European, Latin American and North American avantgardes of the twentieth century.

The Fluid Culture series is organized by Justin Read, PhD, associate professor, and Colleen Culleton, PhD, assistant professor, both in the UB Department of Romance Languages and Literatures.

The UB Humanities Institute is directed by Erik R. Seeman, PhD, professor of history. The associate director is Carrie Tirado Bramen, associate professor of English.

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