The Daily Iowan

National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

The executive director of the National Book Foundation led a talk on the importance of reading and literature.

Lisa+Lucas%2C+the+first+African+American+Executive+Director+of+the+National+Book+Foundation%2C+speaks+to+an+audience+at+The+Englert+theatre+on+Monday%2C+Sept.+25%2C+2017.+Lucas+was+hosted+by+the+University+Lecture+Committee+in+collaboration+The+Green+Room.+She+spoke+on+the+importance+of+literature+and+its+ability+to+bridge+together+communities+from+different+backgrounds.+%22Books+and+literature+can+change+both+our+hearts+and+our+minds%2C%22+said+Lucas+while+speaking+at+The+Englert.+%28Ben+Smith%2FThe+Daily+Iowan%29
Lisa Lucas, the first African American Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, speaks to an audience at The Englert theatre on Monday, Sept. 25, 2017. Lucas was hosted by the University Lecture Committee in collaboration The Green Room. She spoke on the importance of literature and its ability to bridge together communities from different backgrounds.

Lisa Lucas, the first African American Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, speaks to an audience at The Englert theatre on Monday, Sept. 25, 2017. Lucas was hosted by the University Lecture Committee in collaboration The Green Room. She spoke on the importance of literature and its ability to bridge together communities from different backgrounds. "Books and literature can change both our hearts and our minds," said Lucas while speaking at The Englert. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

The Daily Iowan; Photos by Ben S

The Daily Iowan; Photos by Ben S

Lisa Lucas, the first African American Executive Director of the National Book Foundation, speaks to an audience at The Englert theatre on Monday, Sept. 25, 2017. Lucas was hosted by the University Lecture Committee in collaboration The Green Room. She spoke on the importance of literature and its ability to bridge together communities from different backgrounds. "Books and literature can change both our hearts and our minds," said Lucas while speaking at The Englert. (Ben Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Salma Rios, [email protected]

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






The Green Room gave Iowa City a message: Books are powerful.

Lisa Lucas held a lecture Monday at the Englert, 221 E. Washington St., as a part of a lecture series held by The Green Room and the University Lecture Committee, which opens a class to the public with speakers discussing topics relevant to the community.

Lucas’ lecture focused on how books and knowledge can help build a bridge and connect literature and the problems in the world.

“I believe that books can change the world,” she said. “Books and literature can change both our hearts and our minds.”

Lucas, the executive director of the National Book Foundation, has a background in both literature and theater. She has served on numerous committees and boards for theater, literature, and film.

Throughout the lecture, she stressed the importance of reading and getting people involved in literature. She described a little bit about her background with books, how her mother used to read her passages of books and how it sparked a desire in her to read.

Lucas also spoke about how it felt to be the first female and first African American to be the executive director of the National Book Foundation.

“It was really hard at first. I felt a lot of pressure to do well in this position,” she said.

Lucas has held many positions in her career. She served as the publisher of Guernica, a nonprofit online magazine that focuses on the writing that explores the intersection of art and politics with an international and diverse focus. She was the director of education at the Tribeca Film Institute and a member of the development team at Steppenwolf Theater.

Lucas has been a consultant for the Sundance Institute, the San Francisco Film Society, and including her work with the National Book Foundation, she is also serves on the literary council of the Brooklyn Film Festival.

RELATED: UI Honors course presents The Green Room event series

David Gould, the administrator of the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development as well as the instructor leading The Green Room, was excited to promote the ideals Lucas believes in to his students and community.

“Lisa believes that the cannon of American literature should represent the diverse voices that make up the country,” he said. “She is also committed to creating a new generation of readers based on the idea that books “make us more empathetic” and connect us to one another.”

Lucas said she believes everyone should have access to books and emphasized the fact that reading is for everyone. She also left the audience with a question to think about as they left the Englert.

Comments

comments

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Latest News

    Renowned Philadelphia Orchestra headlines at Hancher

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    Assassins sneak on to the Iowa City Community theater stage

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    Your Smith brought emotion, sincerity, and feminine energy to the Mill

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    Anthony Worden to celebrate sophomore album release at Trumpet Blossom

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Latest News

    The hunt to prove the existence of Sasquatch

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    ‘Drop the Mic’ leaves an echo in Sanctuary Pub’s Red Room

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    MySpace Emo Prom returns to 2007 emo nostalgia

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    Turning emotion, into sound, into notes on the Iowa City Ped Mall

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Student Spotlight

    Kick-starting a career booking big names in music

  • National Book Foundation executive director gives talk at The Englert on literature, unity

    Arts

    Japanese Breakfast an absolute treat at the Mill