OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Physician and award-winning poet to give reading at OSU

10/27/2009

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Award-winning Palestinian-American poet and physician Dr. Fady Joudah will appear at Oregon State University at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13.

The reading, discussion and book-signing are part of the 2009-2010 OSU Visiting Writers Series, and are free and open to the public. The event will take place at the main floor rotunda of The Valley Library, 210 S.W. Waldo Place, Corvallis.

Joudah practices emergency medicine in Houston, and has been a field member of the international medical organization Doctors Without Borders since 2001. Many of the poems in his first book, “The Earth in Our Attic,” emerged from his experience treating refugees in Zambia and Darfur-Sudan.

“Once I arrived in Darfur, I was completely shocked. It made me realize we live in a human culture obsessed with the classification of suffering,” Joudah said.

His book, which speaks to powerful human themes such as as identity, exile, war and religion, was awarded the prestigious Yale Younger Poets Prize in 2008. Poet Louise Gluck, who judged the competition, describes “The Earth in the Attic” as “varied, coherent, fierce, tender; impossible to put down, impossible to forget. It will make itself felt.”

A Palestinian-American born in Austin in 1971, Joudah was raised in Texas, Libya and Saudi Arabia, where his father taught history, and gave his son an early love of classical Arabic poetry. Joudah returned to the United States as a college student, attending the University of Georgia, and joined the Veterans Affairs hospital in 2000 as a doctor of internal medicine.

Joudah is also the translator of two books of poetry by the late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, “The Butterfly’s Burden” and the recently released “If I Were Another.”

Joudah’s visit to Corvallis is co-sponsored by the OSU Department of English and the Hundere Endowment for Religion and Culture in the Department of Philosophy. The OSU Visiting Writers Series is supported by The Valley Library, the Department of English, the Office of the Provost, and the OSU Bookstore.