Tag Archives: visiting writer

Ten Things We Learned About Wesleyan from Reading ‘The Gatekeepers’ in High School

Today, Jacques Steinberg returns to campus. We’re looking back at his classic book.

The man, the myth, the legend—Jacques Steinberg.

The man, the myth, the legend—Jacques Steinberg.

Jacques Steinberg’s The Gatekeepers: Inside the Admissions Process of a Premier College is pretty much indisputably the most illuminating and insightful book written in the past few decades about elite college admissions, which Steinberg terms a series of decisions made “behind a cordon of security befitting the selection of a pope.” Conveniently, it also happens to focus on Wes. Steinberg, a journalist and education expert, tracks a diverse group of high school seniors and a then-Wesleyan admissions officer (Ralph Figueroa, currently Director of College Guidance at Albuquerque Academy) as they navigate the 19992000 admissions cycle.

Along with a handful of other Wesleying staffers, I read the book in high school, around the time I decided to apply to Wesleyan, and realized what I had already suspected: college admissions is about as complex, random, and ultimately meaningless as—well, the selection of a pope. It also makes for more thrilling drama than any reality show on TV. Before the rise of CollegeConfidential, The Gatekeepers was the most intimate glimpse at the people on both sides of the admissions process that existed. In fairness, it still is, because CollegeConfidential is a hellish underworld.

Mr. Steinberg, who also founded the New York Times’ “The Choice” blog, where he recently announced his departure from the newspaper after 25 years, is on his way to Middletown yet again. This time, he’s not writing a book about us (we think). He’s coming to lead a talk and Q&A in the Chapel, which is being hosted by the WSA. In honor of this glorious occasion, here’s a round-up of six things we learned about Wesleyan from The Gatekeepers—before even setting foot on campus.

Siddhartha Deb @ Russell House

Maxwell Bevilacqua ’12 takes a break from his full-time day job performing with a Creed cover band to talk about, ahem, more literary fancies:

Come to Russell House this Wednesday, February 20, 2013 to see poet Siddhartha Deb.

Siddhartha Deb is the author of the novels The Point of Return (a New York Times Notable Book) and An Outline of the Republic. His nonfiction book The Beautiful and the Damned: A Portrait of the New India won the PEN Open award. His writing has appeared in Harper’s, The Guardian, The New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, The Nation, n+1, London Review of Books, and The Times Literary Supplement. He has received grants from the Society of Authors and the Nation Institute and a fellowship from the Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Studies.

Date: Wednesday, February 20
Time: 8 p.m.
Place: Russell House (350 High Street)
Cost: Free

Visiting Writer: Lisa Jarnot

Max Bevilacqua ’12 invites you to Russell House at the usual time and place:

Come to Russell House this Wednesday, October 10, 2012 to see poet Lisa Jarnot.

Lisa Jarnot’s books of poetry include Night Scenes (2008), Black Dog Songs (2003), Ring of Fire (2001), and Some Other Kind of Mission (1996). Her acclaimed biography of the San Francisco poet Robert Duncan was published by the University of California Press this year, and her Selected Poems is forthcoming from City Lights Books in 2013. The San Francisco Chronicle called Jarnot’s work on Robert Duncan “dazzling and exhaustive”, and Jacket Magazine wrote, “In a quick dozen years, Lisa Jarnot has established herself as one of the most compelling poets publishing today.”

Date: Wednesday, October 10
Time: 8 pm
Place: Russell House (350 High Street)
Cost: Free

Celebration of New Letters: Innovative Writers of Prose and Poetry

Teagle Fellow Kate Thorpe ’06 invites you to a day of readings and panels by innovative writers of prose and poetry:

You are warmly invited to attend A Celebration of New Letters: A day of readings and panels by innovative writers of prose and poetry. Speakers for this event include acclaimed poets, fiction and nonfiction writers and representatives of various alternative presses and literary organizations such as Wesleyan University Press and Poets House.

Speakers include: Heather Christle, Richard Deming, Dorothea Lasky, Douglas A. Martin, Richard Meier, Stephen Motika, and Parker Smathers. In addition to readings and panels on alternative publishing and innovative literary forms, there will be time throughout the day for informal conversation with these writers.

The event is sponsored by the Wesleyan Writers Conference and Shapiro Creative Writing Center.

Rescheduled for March: Tom Perrotta, Visiting Writer

From Anne Green, via Liz Tinker of the English Department:

Dear friends,

I’m sorry to say that Tom Perrotta will not be speaking on campus tonight, and his Q+A session this afternoon has been cancelled. Please mark your calendars for the new date: March 27, 2012.

Date: March 27, 2012 (Rescheduled date!)
Time: 8 pm
Place: Memorial Chapel
Cost: Free

Visiting Writer: Tom Perrotta in the Chapel (CANCELLED)

Maxwell Bevilacqua ’12 is going to the chapel and he’s gonna get married on Wednesday night at 8:

On Wednesday October 3rd at 8 pm, Tom Perrotta will speak in Memorial Chapel.

Tom Perrotta’s most recent novels are The Leftovers and The Abstinence Teacher. His novels Election and Little Children were both made into acclaimed movies, and Perrotta received an Academy Award nomination for the screenplay of Little Children, which he wrote with director Todd Field. He is currently adapting The Leftovers into an HBO series along with Damon Lindelof, the co-creator of Lost. Perrotta has taught writing at Yale and Harvard, and published essays and reviews in Rolling Stone, GQ, and The New York Times. He also edited the 2012 edition of Best American Short Stories.

If you have questions about screen writing, adapting books into film, or getting published, come and join Tom Perrotta in Allbritton 311 at 4:15 PM for a Q&A!

Date: October 3, 2012
Time: 8 pm
Place: Memorial Chapel
Cost: Free

Edit: This event has been postponed until March 27.