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Julia Alvarez: Woman, Writer, Activist

On Sunday, March 5 at 7 PM at the Lied Center, our NEA Big Read/Read Across Lawrence ends on the highest of notes with a visit from the writer herself, Julia Alvarez.

Author of 19 books and three collections of poetry, Alvarez will talk about her books, in particular, In the Time of the Butterflies and Return to Sender, and what it means to be a citizen of the world as a woman, writer, and activist.

This event is free and open to the public. No tickets required. Lobby opens at 6 PM. The Lied Center is located at 1600 Stewart Drive, Lawrence, KS.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Julia Alvarez is the recipient of two Pura Belpre awards and the Hispanic Heritage Award in Literature. She was born in New York City, and spent her early childhood in the Dominican Republic. Her family was forced to flee in 1960 because of her father’s participation in an attempt to overthrow the country’s military dictator, Rafael Trujillo. She returned to New York as a ten year old and turned to books and writing to cope with language and culture barriers she faced upon returning to the land of her birth.

“Lawrence Public Library and its partners were among 75 groups nationwide to receive a Big Read Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. This is a huge honor and the first time that Lawrence has earned this grant, which makes it possible to bring Ms. Alvarez to Lawrence. KU Libraries look forward to sharing the scholarship and collections of our Latin and Caribbean Studies scholars through the collaborative programming being developed for the Lawrence community,” said Sarah Goodwin Thiel, Head of KU Libraries’ Center for Community Engagement.


Offered in partnership with KU Libraries, the KU Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and the Lied Center of Kansas. NEA Big Read is program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.

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2 Comments

  1. Liz Bonny says:

    How many copies of the adult book do you give out during read across Lawrence? Does it vary from year to year?

    • Heather Kearns says:

      Hi, Liz. In past years we’ve had upwards of 600-900 copies. Half of them go to our partners at KU, leaving us about 400 to hand out at the kick-off.

      This year we got about 500 copies because it was available on hoopla for free download. We gave away about 230 copies (mostly English, about 20 in Spanish) and offered hoopla info for anyone who wasn’t able to get one/preferred to get an ebook.