Huntingdon News

September 28, 2012
For immediate release:

Huntingdon College
News Release

Ellison Writers Festival Lecture features soldier-poet Brian Turner

Montgomery, Ala.—Huntingdon College's annual Rhoda Coleman Ellison Writers Festival will feature a public lecture and reading by soldier-poet Brian Turner, Thursday, October 4, at 7:00 p.m. in the College's Ligon Chapel, Flowers Hall.  The event is free and open to the public.  

Turner, the author of the poetry collections, Here, Bullet (2005) and Phantom Noise (2010), served seven years in the US Army, including one year as an infantry team leader in Iraq with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, and another deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina with the 10th Mountain Division.  Turner's poetry has been published in Poetry Daily, The Georgia Review and other journals, and in the Voices in Wartime Anthology published in conjunction with the feature-length documentary film of the same name. Turner was featured in Operation Homecoming, a documentary that explores the firsthand accounts of American servicemen and women through their own words. He earned a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Oregon. In 2009, Turner was selected as one of 50 United States Artists Fellows.

Turner's collection, Here, Bullet, won the 2005 Beatrice Hawley Award, the New York Times Editor's Choice selection, the 2006 Pen Center USA Best in the West Award, and the 2007 Poets Prize, among other accolades.  Phantom Noise was shortlisted for the 2010 T.S. Eliot Prize in Poetry.  Poet Louis McKee wrote, "Turner's intention is neither to romanticize nor to protest the war but simply to bring its ironies and madness, its sad and difficult truths, into the light—a light that perhaps will exorcise the demons."

"The relationship Turner establishes with the reader is not dialogue but a tidal insistence on reflection, that if there is meaning in loss, there must be meaning in what precedes loss, in what is related to loss."—The Washington Post

The Ellison Writers Festival was endowed by the late professor emerita of English for whom the series is named and funds an annual public lecture by a writer of note, as well as a workshop for Huntingdon writers.

Huntingdon College, grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition of the United Methodist Church, is committed to nurturing growth in faith, wisdom, and service and to graduating individuals prepared to succeed in a rapidly changing world. Founded in 1854, Huntingdon is a coeducational liberal arts college. The College motto, "Enter to grow in wisdom; go forth to apply wisdom in service," is inscribed in stone above the front door of John Jefferson Flowers Hall.  Ranked in the top tier of regional colleges by U.S. News and World Report and consistently listed in the Princeton Review's "The Best Colleges: Region by Region," Huntingdon has for two years been recognized on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Washington Monthly, which ranks colleges on the basis of their contribution to the public good, places Huntingdon in the top 20% of 352 Baccalaureate colleges. 


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