Rescheduled UND Writers Conference starts this week

Although the 51st Annual UND Writers Conference, “The Working Classes,” was cancelled for the first time in its 50-year history, the event has been rescheduled as a series of Thursday evening readings/panel discussions.

The series kicks off this Thursday, Sept. 17, at 7 p.m. and will continue almost every Thursday through Thanksgiving.

They are free and open to all. To participate, please register to get the Zoom webinar link, which will enable you to not only listen but also ask questions of the panels and during Q&As.

This week’s panel features Roy G. Guzmán, Jenny Zhang, Matt Young, and Richard Tsong-Taatarri. It is focused on arts and humanities in relation to socioeconomic background with a particular emphasis on those who are blue collar.

The weeks to come will feature the following authors:

Sept. 17, 7 p.m. – Panel: “Class & Art” (Jenny Zhang, Matt Young, Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Roy G. Guzmán)
Sept. 24, 7 p.m. – Reading: Jenny Zhang
Oct. 1, 7 p.m. – Reading: Laila Lalami
Oct. 15, 7 p.m. – Panel: “Class and Place” (Reginald Dwayne Betts, Roy G. Guzmán, Laila Lalami)
Oct. 22, 4 p.m. – Reading: Reginald Dwayne Betts
Oct. 22, 7 p.m. – Panel: “Class and Society” (Reginald Dwayne Betts, Richard Tsong-Taatarii, Matt Young)
Oct. 29, 7 p.m. – Presentation: Richard Tsong-Taatarii
Nov, 5, 7 p.m. – Reading: Roy G. Guzmán
Nov. 19, 7 p.m. – Reading: Matt Young

Founded in 1970 and held every year since, the UND Writers Conference typically is a three-day event featuring six to eight authors annually. With authors ranging from Gwendolyn Brooks and August Wilson to Tommy Orange and Colson Whitehead, the UND Writers Conference is committed to community outreach, engagement, and finding ways to increase audience access to literature.
The conference’s mission is to provide a forum for those in North Dakota and the Upper Plains to discuss how the arts impact our everyday lives. It focuses on the work of the invited authors, poets and artisans, as well as their extemporaneous interaction with attendees.
All Conference events are free and open to the public with recordings uploaded to its digital collection, creating an open access opportunity for a rigorous exploration of the literary arts, not otherwise available, to all.