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USM Visiting Artist Series Features Jeanne Larsen, Jamel Brinkley

Thu, 09/19/2019 - 14:10pm | By: Mike Lopinto

The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) Visiting Artist Series kicks off its fall season with readings by special guest writers Jeanne Larsen in September and Jamel Brinkley in October. Both events are free and are open to the public.

Jeanne LarsenLarsen will give a reading (fiction and poetry) on Sept. 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the USM Ogletree Alumni House on the Hattiesburg campus. Larsen has published a multitude of novels and books of poetry. Larsen’s new book What Penelope Chooses was winner of the Cider Press Review Book Award.

“Often irreverent, never irrelevant. (Larsen’s) work is technically faultless, and there is a depth to her work that often stops her readers in mid-sentence so they can get their breath back,” said Dan Smith in a review on What Penelope Chooses. “Language is her art, giving her the means to express a rare wisdom and intelligence.”

Jamel BrinkleyOn Oct. 10, Brinkley will give a reading from his fiction at 7 p.m. in the Liberal Arts Building (LAB) 108, Gonzales Auditorium on the Hattiesburg campus. Brinkley, the author of A Lucky Man: Stories, was a finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction, the Story Prize, the John Leonard Prize, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize, and the winner of the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence.

“There’s true magic in Jamel Brinkley’s stories. He finds the subtle and humane lurking within the drama of our lives,” said Victor LaValle, author of The Changeling, in a review. “Brinkley writes with great insight and honesty about people… By using all his formidable talents, he’s shown us a vision of ourselves.”

This event is made possible thanks to the generous support of Partners for the Arts.

For more than 30 years, the USM Center for Writers has brought internationally acclaimed authors of poetry and fiction to Hattiesburg and the USM community for public readings, workshops, and individual conferences with Center graduate students.

For more information, contact Dr. Olivia Clare at or Dr. Angela Ball at