Master StorytellerGAMBIER, Ohio (November 8, 2005) Acclaimed novelist, poet, and short-story writer Ha Jin, winner of the 1999 National Book Award, will visit Kenyon's campus on Monday and Tuesday, November 14 and 15, to speak about writing and the creative process.
Jin will participate in a public interview on Monday evening, November 14, at 7:30 p.m. in Higley Hall Auditorium. Interviewing him will be Anna Xiao Dong Sun, instructor of sociology, and Yang Xiao, assistant professor of philosophy. On Tuesday morning at 11:10 a.m. during Common Hour, Jin will be available in Peirce Hall Lounge for a conversation about creative writing.
Jin's novel Waiting received not only the 1999 National Book Award but also the 2000 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction. He won a second PEN/Faulkner Award this year for his latest novel, War Trash, putting him in elite company--Philip Roth and John Edgar Wideman are the only other writers to have won twice in the prize's twenty-five-year history.
Other honors include the PEN/Hemingway Award for his first collection of short stories, Ocean of Words, and the Flannery O'Connor Prize for his second, Under the Red Flag. His novella In the Pond was selected as a best fiction book of 1998 by the Chicago Tribune. Jin has also published two volumes of poetry, Between Silences and Facing Shadows.
Jin was born in China and earned his B.A. at Heilongjiang University and his M.A. at Shandong University. As he was preparing his doctoral dissertation at Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, the television coverage of the massacre in Tiananmen Square persuaded him to remain in the United Sates. When he was unable to find a teaching job, he turned to writing, taking jobs as a night watchman and busboy to support his family. Following his initial publishing success, he was hired to teach at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He is now a professor of English at Boston University.
Sponsored by Kenyon's Faculty Lectureships Committee, the conversations with Ha Jin are open to the public at no charge.