Each year the UMass Amherst English Department welcomes an eminent writer and scholar to UMass to deliver the annual Troy Lecture. This year’s Troy Lecturer, Viet Thanh Nguyen, recently received a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (a “genius grant”), won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and was a finalist for the 2016 National Book Award for nonfiction. Nguyen’s Troy Lecture, “War, Fiction, and the Ethics of Memory,” will be held on November 15, 2017 at 4.30 pm in the Student Union Ballroom. Books will be available for purchase and signing.
Viet Thanh Nguyen is Aerol Arnold Chair of English and Professor of English, American Studies and Ethnicity and Comparative Literature at the University of Southern California. His novel The Sympathizer (2015) won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, while Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (2016), was a finalist for the National Book Award in nonfiction. Nguyen is also the author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America (2002), and a recent collection of short stories, The Refugees (2017). Nguyen also writes for the New York Times, Time, The Guardian, The Atlantic, and the Los Angeles Times, where he is a critic at large.
Previous Troy lecturers have included Nadine Gordimer, Sherman Alexie, Margaret Atwood, Judith Butler, J.M. Coetzee, Seamus Heaney, Salman Rushdie, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Orhan Pamuk, and Wole Soyinka. The Troy Lecture honors Frederick S. Troy, who was a Professor of English, an Honorary Professor of the University, and a former UMass trustee.