On March 3, Niimiipuu/Nez Perce writer, scholar, and Indigenous language activist, Beth Piatote, will read from her work for Washington State University's Visiting Writers Series. Piatote is the author of two books, including the mixed-genre collection "The Beadworkers: Stories," which was long-listed for the Aspen Words Literary Prize, the PEN/Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction, and shortlisted for the California Independent Booksellers Association “Golden Poppy” Award, as well as numerous stories, essays, and poems in literary and scholarly journals. She is an associate professor of Comparative Literature and Native American Studies at UC Berkeley, and chair of the Designated Emphasis in Indigenous Language Revitalization. Piatote is an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation and works in her heritage language of Nez Perce. The talk is open to all and will be held on YouTube Live at 6 p.m.
Later in March, Two Spirit Sugpiaq/Black/Choctaw poet and interdisciplinary artist Storme Webber joins us on March 23 at 6 p.m. via YouTube Live for a poetry reading. Webber is second generation Two Spirit and lesbian and her work is cross genre, incorporating text, performance, audio, altar installation, and archival photographs and collaboration in order to engage with ideas of history, lineage, gender, race and sexuality. Her practice explores liminal identities, survivance and decolonization, and does so in a blues/jazz-based experimental manner, often incorporating acapella vocals. Webber has received numerous honors and residencies; including from Hedgebrook, Ragdale and Banff Arts Centre, and recently was honored with the James W Ray Award. Her first solo museum exhibition, “Casino: A Palimpsest,” was presented at the Frye Art Museum in Seattle.
Then, on March 30 at 6 p.m. via YouTube Live, author, reporter and science writer Michelle Nijhuis will discuss her most recent book Beloved Beasts: Fighting for Life in an Age of Extinction, shortlisted for the 2020 J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award, one of LitHub’s Most Anticipated Books of 2021, winner of the Sierra Club’s 2021 Rachel Carson Award, and one of the Chicago Tribune’s 10 Best Books of 2021. Nijhuis is a contributing editor at High Country News, project editor at The Atlantic Monthly, and co-editor of the Science Writer’s Handbook. Her reporting has won national honors, including two AAAS/Kavli Science Journalism Awards, the Walter Sullivan Award for Excellence in Science Journalism, and inclusion in four Best American anthologies.
The WSU Visiting Writers Series brings noted poets and writers of fiction and nonfiction to campus for creative readings, class visits, workshops, and collaborative exchanges across intellectual and artistic disciplines. All talks in the series are free and open to students, faculty, staff, and the broader community. For more information on the series, including the YouTube links to our upcoming readings, visit our website: english.wsu.edu/visiting-writers/