POUGHKEEPSIE, NY — Michael Dirda, the award-winning former editor of The Washington Post Book World and author of "Dirda on Books," the Post's weekly online books discussion, will speak in the Sanders Classroom Building, Room 212 on Thursday, February 28, at 5:00 p.m. His talk, "On Deadline: Life as an editor, writer, and online columnist for The Washington Post Book World," is free and open to the public.
"Although he earned a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Cornell, Dirda has somehow managed to retain, well into middle age, a myopic 12-year-old's exuberant passion for reading," said the Washington Post in a December 2007 review of his work. According to the critic John Simon, "You may well conclude that Dirda has indeed read everything worth reading."
Dirda has been an editor and writer for The Washington Post Book World for the past thirty years, and he was the winner of the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for criticism. His tasks range from writing reviews of literary fiction, intellectual history, children's books, science fiction and fantasy, mysteries, poetry, and biography, to features and personal essays about books. He is also the author of several books, most recently Classics for Pleasure (Harcourt, 2007) and Book by Book: Notes on Reading and Life (Henry Holt & Co., 2006). A Fulbright Fellowship recipient, he received his bachelor's degree in English from Oberlin College, and began his journalism and writing careers soon after.
The English Department, the American Culture and Media Studies programs, the Vassar College Libraries, and the Office of the Dean of the Faculty are co-sponsors of Michael Dirda's lecture.