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Coming to Campus

- September 17, 2007

Coming to Campus is a section announcing visiting speakers of note. Those who wish to submit items for this section should send a brief description (maximum 300 words) of the event, including the date, time, and place, and giving the speaker’s name, title, and outstanding accomplishments to: Visiting Speaker, Advance, 1266 Storrs Road, Storrs, CT 06269-4144, or by e-mail: advance@uconn.edu.

The information must be received by 4 p.m. on Monday, a minimum of two weeks prior to the event.

Novelist Naeem Murr to give reading in Konover Auditorium Sept. 26

Novelist Naeem Murr, the Fall 2007 Aetna Visiting Writer-in-Residence, will give a reading in Konover Auditorium on Wednesday, Sept. 26, at 7 p.m.

Murr is the author of three novels: The Boy (1998), The Genius of the Sea (2003), and The Perfect Man (2007).

The Boy, his first novel, was a New York Times Notable Book. It won a Lambda Literary Award and was translated into six languages.

His latest novel, The Perfect Man, won the 2007 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for the Best Book of Europe and South Asia, and was long-listed for the 2006 Booker Prize.

Born and raised in the U.K., Murr has lived in the U.S. since his early 20s.

He uses his knowledge of both countries to shape his stories. The Boy and The Genius of the Sea are set in London and its environs, while The Perfect Man is primarily set in the imaginary town of Pisgah, Mo.

Murr’s awards include a Stegner Fellowship, a Lannan Residency Fellowship, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

He has also been a writer-in-residence at universities including the University of Missouri, Western Michigan University, and Northwestern University.

The Aetna Visiting Writer-in-Residence Program began in 2003 with funding from the Aetna Chair in Writing.

It invites nationally or internationally-known writers to campus for several days.

Each resident writer gives a public reading, holds question-and-answer sessions with the campus community, teaches master classes in creative writing, meets with student writers in intensive one-on-one tutorials, and shares meals with faculty and students.

The Creative Writing Program usually hosts two Aetna Writers-in-Residence a year, one a poet and one a prose writer.


Dean of Yale law school to give Sackler human rights lecture Oct. 2

Harold Hongju Koh, the dean of Yale Law School, a leading expert on international law and prominent advocate of human and civil rights, will deliver the 13th Raymond and Beverly Sackler Distinguished Lecture in Human Rights on Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 4 p.m. in Konover Auditorium.

The title of his talk will be “Repairing our Human Rights Reputation.”

Koh, who is also Gerard C. and Bernice Latrobe Smith Professor of International Law, began teaching at Yale Law School in 1985, and has served since 2004 as dean.

From 1998 to 2001, he served as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor.

Previously, he practiced law at Covington and Burling and at the Office of Legal Counsel at the Department of Justice.

Koh has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court and testified before the U.S. Congress more than 20 times.

He has been awarded 10 honorary doctorates and two law school medals, and has received many awards.

Koh is the author of eight books, including Transnational Legal Problems (with H. Steiner and D. Vagts), and The National Security Constitution, which won the American Political Science Association’s award as the best book on the American Presidency.

He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; an Honorary Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford; a former Visiting Fellow at All Souls College, Oxford; a member of the Council of the American Law Institute; and a member of the American Philosophical Society.

He has held fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the Century Foundation.

He sits on the Boards of Overseers of Harvard University and on the boards of directors of the Brookings Institution, Human Rights First, the American Arbitration Association, and the National Democratic Institute.

He has been named one of America’s “45 Leading Public Sector Lawyers under the Age of 45” by American Lawyer magazine, and one of the “100 Most Influential Asian-Americans of the 1990s” by A magazine.

A Korean-American native of Boston, Koh holds a B.A. degree from Harvard College and B.A. and M.A. degrees from Oxford University, where he was a Marshall Scholar. He earned his J.D. from Harvard Law School.


Peace activist Ela Gandhi to give Asian American Heritage keynote address

Ela Gandhi, a peace activist and former Member of Parliament in South Africa from 1994 to 2004, will deliver the fifth annual Mahavir Ahimsa/Nonviolence and Asian American Heritage Observance keynote address, “The Crises of the 21st Century – Some Gandhian Solutions.”

The talk will take place on Thursday, Oct. 4, in the Student Union Theatre, beginning at 4:30 p.m.

During apartheid, Ms. Gandhi was banned from political activism and subjected to house arrest for nine years.

In Parliament, she aligned with the African National Congress party and represented the area of her birth in the KwaZulu Natal province near Durban.

Granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi, she founded the Gandhi Development Trust; developed a 24-hour program against domestic violence; and currently serves as Chancellor of Durban University of Technology.

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