Readings, Lectures and Events / School of Letters Readings and Lectures

Every summer the School of Letters invites writers, poets, publishers and scholars to speak each week that school is in session. All readings and lectures take place at Gailor Auditorium unless otherwise noted, and a reception usually follows upstairs in the atrium. The public is welcome. Events held outside of Sewanee are also listed here.

Click here for a list of past events.


June 27, 2018

Reading and Conversation wtih Roger Hodge

Roger Hodge is the author, most recently, of Texas Blood: Seven Generations Among the Outlaws, Ranchers, Indians, Missionaries, Soldiers, and Smugglers of the Borderlands. He is deputy editor of The Intercept, an online news magazine devoted to investigative journalism, and his writings have appeared in many publications, including the Sewanee Review, Texas Monthly, Oxford American, The New Republic, and Harper’s Magazine. He was formerly the editor of Harper's Magazine 2006 - 2010, and the editor of the Oxford American from 2012-2015.

Texas Blood is an intoxicating, singularly illuminating history of the Texas borderlands from their settlement through seven generations of Hodge’s ranching family. John Jeremiah Sullivan says of Texas Blood: “Imagine finding out that the land where Cormac McCarthy set one of his most brutal novels was your family’s ranch . . . I’ve read loads of books about Texas but rarely encountered one so deeply of it, so deep the story escapes and becomes a treatise on the twisted American past, and the force exerted by that on our complex present."

Roger Hodge is a 1989 graduate of Sewanee, and lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and their two sons.

Wednesday, June 27 at 4:30 pm in Gailor Auditorium. Reception following at the Sewanee Review House.


July 5, 2018

Reading with 2018 John Grammer Fellow Lucy Alibar

Please join us for a reading with Lucy Alibar, the 2018 John Grammer Fellow at the School of Letters.

Lucy Alibar is an American screenwriter and playwright who has been nominated for an Academy Award, a BAFTA award, and the Scripter Award for the film Beasts of the Southern Wild. The film was an adaptation written with Benh Zeitlin based on Lucy's play, Juicy and Delicious. Beasts of the Southern Wild also earned the Sundance Grand Jury Prize and the Cannes Film Festival Camera D’Or.

Lucy is also the winner of the Ray Bradbury Nebula Award, the Humanitas Prize, and the Nantucket Film Festival New Voices in Screenwriting Award.Lucy’s writing has been published in Zoetrope, the Oxford American, and The Wall Street Journal and her plays have been produced at Sundance Theatre Lab, National Theatre Studio, Joe’s Pub, Ojai, Berkeley Rep, and Williamstown.

She has worked for Pixar, Escape Artists/Amazon, Julia Roberts/New Line, and Guillermo del Toro/Universal (“The Secret Garden”). “Burnpile” is the title of her latest work and it is currently being adapted into a pilot for FX/Amblin Entertainment. Her film "Troupe Zero" is in production with Amazon.

Lucy is also a Usual Suspect at New York Theatre Workshop, a Sundance Screenwriting Fellow, associate editor at Oxford American magazine, and advocate for girls in the arts. We're pleased to welcome her back to Sewanee, where she was a Sewanee Young Writers' Participant and later a workshop teacher.

Lucy Alibar appears as the 2018 John Grammer Fellow through the generosity of the Blake & Bailey Family Fund. Read more here:

Screening of Beasts of the Southern Wild on Tuesday, July 3, at 7:30 pm, Sewanee Union Theater. Free and open to the public.

Reading with Lucy Alibar on THURSDAY, July 5, at 5:00 pm in Gailor Auditorium. Reception following in Gailor Atrium. Note change in day from our usual Wednesday events.




July 11, 2018 at 4:30 pm

2018 MFA Candidate Reading

Wednesday, July 11 at 4:30 pm, Gailor Auditorium.