Lee News

Paden Opens Writer's Series


By Cana Cooper

Lee University’s Department of Language and Literature recently hosted author and translator Jeremy Paden as the first guest at this year’s Writer’s Series.

Paden read from a variety of sources, including fellow poet Christian Wiman’s collection, “Every Riven Thing,” and his own poetry collection, “Prison Recipes.”

“We are so glad that Paden shared with us his love of poetry, his experiences growing up as the child of medical missionaries, and his love of Spanish and Latin America,” said Dr. William Woolfitt, assistant professor of creative writing at Lee.

Paden Reads at Writer's Series
Jeremy Paden reads at Writer's Series.

Following the reading, Paden answered questions from the audience on a variety of subjects, including the inspiration for his poems and his writing process.

“Paden's reading last Thursday was a moving experience, as he described with great sensitivity and compassion the lives of several individuals who were trapped underground in the 2010 Chilean mining accident,” said Lee student Hope Fischbach. “Paden's language and imagery are beautiful in themselves, but I was personally inspired by the way Paden uses language to deepen our understanding of each miner's humanity.”

The evening closed with a dessert reception and a book signing with the author.

Earlier that day, Paden also spoke at Walker Valley High School and Cleveland High School.

His poems and translations have appeared widely in journals and in the anthology “Black Bone: 25 Years of the Affrilachian Poets,” which he also co-edited. He is a member of Affrilachian Poets and resides in Lexington, Kentucky.

Paden received his doctorate in Latin American literature at Emory University and is a professor of Spanish at Transylvania University. He is also on the faculty of Spalding University's low residency master of fine arts where he teaches literary translation.

This event was funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and Tennessee Arts Commission.

The Writer’s Series will continue with Amy Wright, a poet and creative non-fiction writer, on Feb. 27, 2020.

For more information on the Writer’s Series, email Woolfitt.
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