Former US Poet Laureate opens 2015 Miriam Allott Lecture Series

Former US Poet Laureate, Rita Dove will open the University’s Miriam Allott Visiting Writers Public Lecture Series tonight, at the Victoria Gallery and Museum.

The Pulitzer Prize winner, who has never visited Liverpool before, leads an impressive roster of literary talent appearing at University venues over the next month.

Describing poetry in a multimedia age as “distilled nuggets of information”, Rita is confident that the form maintains relevance and continues to transcend class, race and gender boundaries.

She said: “That’s the remarkable thing about poetry. Even if it’s a poem about a specific culture or a certain age group, it can still be felt by others.

“Even if you go on social media, you can see how many people are interested in what I would call ‘distilled nuggets of information’.

“People share short poems, and twitter poems. It’s something we need, that communication with each other. Poetry does it with words and fulfils that idea of communicating, transmitting to each other.”

Rita will deliver the Annual Kenneth Allott Lecture, in association with The Poetry Society. The Lecture was established by Professor Miriam Allott in honour of her late husband and opens the literary series.

Organised and delivered by the University’s Centre for New and International Writing, the opening lecture will be followed two weeks later by new Miriam Allott Fellow, Sean Borodale who will take to the stage in the School of the Arts Library on November 3.

On November 17, American poet, translator and critic, Marilyn Hacker will deliver a talk before Forrest Gander is joined by John Redmond on Tuesday November 24 and Oscar Martin Centano, to close the 2015 series, on November 25.

Rita Dove appears at the Victoria Gallery and Museum on October 20 from 6pm. All the events are free to attend, but booking is recommended. To book your place, please visit


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