Pulitzer Prize winner Isabel Wilkerson to present public lecture

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Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and best-selling author Isabel Wilkerson, the first black woman in the history of American journalism to win a Pulitzer Prize, will present a public lecture at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 24 in the Bazarsky Lecture Hall.

Free and open to the public, “An Evening with Isabel Wilkerson” is being presented by the Mosaic, Salve Regina’s student newspaper, along with the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy. Those interested in attending are asked to RSVP to pellcenter@salve.edu or (401) 341-2927.

Wilkerson spent most of her career as a national correspondent and bureau chief at The New York Times, winning the Pulitzer Prize for her work as Chicago bureau chief in 1994.

Her book, “The Warmth of Other Suns,” is a New York Times bestseller that brings to life one of the epic stories of the 20th century through three unforgettable protagonists who made the decision of their lives during what came to be known as the Great Migration.

Inspired by her own parents’ migration, Wilkerson devoted 15 years to the research and writing of this book. She interviewed more than 1,200 people, unearthed archival works and gathered the voices of the famous and the unknown to tell the epic story of the relocation of an entire people.

The book won the 2010 National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction, the 2011 Heartland Prize for Nonfiction, the 2011 Lynton History Prize from Harvard and Columbia universities, the 2011 Anisfield-Wolf Award for Nonfiction, the 2011 Hillman Book Prize, the Stephen Ambrose Oral History Prize, the Independent Literary Award for Nonfiction, the Horace Mann Bond Book Award from Harvard University, the New England Book Award for Nonfiction, the Hurston Wright Legacy Award for Nonfiction, the NAACP Image Award for best literary debut and was shortlisted for the 2011 Pen-Galbraith Literary Award for Nonfiction and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

It was named one of the 10 best books of the year by The New York Times Book Review, one of the five best books of the year by Amazon and made the best of the year lists of The New Yorker, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Economist, The Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Newsday, Entertainment Weekly, O Magazine, Publishers Weekly and more than dozen others.It made news around the world when President Obama chose “The Warmth of Other Suns” for summer reading on Martha’s Vineyard in 2011.

In 2012, The New York Times Magazine named the book to its list of the all-time best books of nonfiction. In early 2013, The New York Times Book Review declared that the book “was published only two years ago, but it shows every indication of becoming a classic.”

Wilkerson has also won the George Polk Award, a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, and was named journalist of the year by the National Association of Black Journalists. She has appeared at universities across the country and in Europe and on national programs such as “60 Minutes,” “Charlie Rose,” “Fresh Air with Terry Gross,” “NBC’s Nightly News,” MSNBC, the BBC, C-SPAN and others. She has taught narrative nonfiction as Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University, as Cox Professor at Emory University and as professor of journalism at Boston University.

Also sponsoring Wilkerson’s visit to Salve Regina are the offices of academic affairs and mission integration, along with the McKillop Library.

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