March 05, 2004

Allison Joseph will give free reading of her work

by K.C. Jaehnig

CARBONDALE, Ill - Allison E. Joseph, a Southern Illinois University Carbondale writer dubbed by her publisher "one of the leading poets of her young generation" will give a free reading of her work at 8 p.m. Tuesday, March 16, in the Student Center Auditorium on the Southern Illinois University Carbondale campus. A public reception in the Gallery Lounge will follow.

Media Advisory

Reporters who wish to talk with Allison Joseph before her reading may meet her at 3 p.m. Tuesday, March 16, in the Southern Illinois University Carbondale Student Center Ohio Room.

Word Press published Joseph's latest poetry collection, "Worldly Pleasures," in December of 2003. That was a banner year for the young African-American writer, who over its course won six writing awards and published her fourth book, "Imitation of Life."

Joseph's first collection of poems, "What Keeps Us Here," won the John C. Zacharis First Book Prize; her work has gained recognition from the Illinois Arts Council and the Bread Loaf and Sewanee writers' conferences as well.

She joined SIUC's creative writing faculty in 1994 and edits its literary journal, the Crab Orchard Review. She also set up and runs the University's annual summer workshop for high school writers. Joseph earned her bachelor's degree from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, in 1988 and her master's in fine arts from Indiana University in 1992.

Readers who would like a preview of Joseph's work can find her poetry on line at To learn more about her, visit the Perspectives Web site, SIUC's online chronicle of faculty research and creative activity, at

Both the reading and the reception are sponsored by the University's annual Charles D. Tenney lecture series, which exemplifies SIUC's aspiration of reaching out to others through coordinating cultural outreach programs as outlined in the Southern@150initiative, a long-range plan that focuses on the University's growth. SIUC's Honors Program administers the Tenney lectureships, named for the University's provost and vice president from 1952 to 1971.