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Emily Dickinson International Society Annual Meeting Slated

AMHERST — Emily Dickinson scholars and enthusiasts from around the world will be visiting Amherst August 7-9 for the annual meeting of the Emily Dickinson International Society.

Staged in collaboration with the Emily Dickinson Museum, this year’s meeting has a theme of “Dickinson in Her Elements.” The programs, said EDIS President Martha Nell Smith, are inspired by the poet’s engagements with air, earth, fire, and water, and the general public is encouraged to attend and participate.

“There’s a delightful variety of offerings, from critical institutes, lectures, and musical performances to poetry workshops and tours of Emily Dickinson’s gardens and Amherst College’s Wilder Observatory,” said Smith, who noted that after the success of last year’s annual meeting in Amherst, she’s excited to be back in Dickinson’s home town again. “People are excited to be returning to Amherst. They do love being in Dickinson’s element.”

Among the many offerings are:
• A critical institute in which participants share and critique essays on Dickinson’s life and work; 

• Lectures by D’Youville College English Professor Marta Werner on “The Weather (of) Documents,” University of Georgia English Professor Cody Marrs on “Dickinson in the Winds of War,” and Tulane University English Professor Michelle Kohler’s “Prompter than a Star: Dickinson’s Clockwork”; 

• Performances by The Red Skies Music Ensemble of “Emily Dickinson in her Element: Accomplished Musician, Emerging Poet” and jazz pianist Tomoko Ozawa performing works inspired by Dickinson’s poetry on Martha Dickinson Bianchi’s Steinway in the Evergreens.

 The Red Skies Music Ensemble performance will be held Friday, August 7, at 8 p.m. at Amherst College’s Keefe Campus Center. Tickets are $20 at the door. There is limited, first come, first served, seating;

• Combining the music Emily Dickinson played and loved with an illustrated narrative and theatrical presentation of her own wit and commentaries from correspondence and poetry, the Red Skies Music Ensemble delivers an entertaining and vivid portrayal of Dickinson in her elements of music, nature, Amherst and New England. The event is co-sponsored by the Emily Dickinson International Society, Jones Library Special Collections, and the Emily Dickinson Museum; 


• Presentations by authors Nuala O’Connor (Miss Emily) and Susan Snively (The Heart Has Many Doors); and
• Poetry workshops and discussions, a hike on the Emily Dickinson Trail, visits to the Amherst College Wilder Observatory, and a program on Dickinson’s gardens.

The Emily Dickinson International Society was founded in 1988 to promote, perpetuate, and enhance the study and appreciation of Emily Dickinson throughout the world.

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