The 20th Mercyhurst University Literary Festival

Authors Marie Benedict (left) and Patricia Jabbeh Wesley will read from their works at the Mercyhurst Literary Festival

The Mercyhurst University Literary Festival is set to open the book for a third decade. And as usual, the table of contents looks pretty compelling.

Throughout April, various writing virtuosos will stop by campus to read excerpts from their work and offer advice to students of the craft, whether they are currently attending Mercyhurst or not (all events are free and open to the public). The wordsmiths scheduled to appear at the 20th Lit Fest are as follows:

Mary Benedict


It is often said that “behind every great man is a great woman” – this is the premise of the historical novel series by prestigious litigation lawyer/bestselling author Marie Benedict, which reimagines the lives of brilliant but little-known whose stories are too often lost in the past. shadows of eminent men. Among them are The other Einstein (Albert Einstein’s first wife, Mileva, also a physicist), The only woman in the room (inventor Hedy Lamarr), Lady Clementine (Clementine Churchill, wife of the British Prime Minister), and His hidden genius (British scientist Rosalind Franklin, discoverer of the structure of DNA).

After reading passages from her novels, Ms. Benedict will answer questions from the public and be available for book signings.

1 p.m. // Mary D’Angelo Center for the Performing Arts

Alive & Kicking: a musical celebration


Within the tradition of folk music are some of the most talented songwriters of all time, many of whom are thankfully still alive. That evening, local musicians will take the stage at the Taylor Little Theater to pay tribute to Neil Young, Pete Townshend, Simon and Garfunkel, Gordon Lightfoot and many more. All of these singer-songwriters recorded their first song before 1982 and continue to do so more than 40 years later.

Featured performers include Jim Tometsko & Friends, Clint Jones, Jimmy Cuneo, Brittany Barko Krugger, Kevin Sullivan, and several other Mercyhurst students and guests.

7 p.m. // Taylor Little Theater

Patricia Jabbeh Wesley


Since immigrating to the United States with her family in 1991 to escape the ravages of the Liberian civil war, Patricia Jabbeh Wesley has made a name for herself in the world of literature, authoring six books of poetry (the most recently Song of Praise for My Children: New and Selected Poems and When the wanderers come home) and children’s book (In Monrovia, the river visits the sea). Socially conscious and lyrically sharp, the Penn State-Altoona professor of English, creative writing and African literature has received numerous awards over her career, including a World Bank Fellowship, a Crab Orchard Award and a Wise Women Literary 2016. Art Award.

7:30 p.m. // Little Taylor Theater

Lumen Unveiling and student prizes


Lit Fest’s closing event turns its attention to local talent in the form of creative writing, English and graphic design students.

Lumen is an award-winning multimedia magazine produced by students and compiled by Mercyhurst’s English and Arts departments. The print edition contains writings, arts, and photographs of exemplary students; the online edition adds music and dance recordings. The 2022 edition will start tonight.

In addition, four P. Barry McAndrew Writing Awards will be presented – three for the most outstanding works of creative writing and one for the most excellent literary criticism. Students will be invited to the podium to share their production.

7:30 p.m. // Little Taylor Theater

Matt Swanseger can be contacted at [email protected]

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