The Contemporary Thought Speaker Series announced tonight that award-winning author Junot Díaz will speak at Northwestern Thursday, Jan. 28th at 7 p.m in Tech auditorium.
He is the second speaker in this academic year’s series, following Khan Academy founder Sal Khan’s talk in October 2015.
“We chose him because of how influential his work is and how much we admire it,” said Samantha Rose, CTSS co-chair.
Díaz received the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2008 for his novel The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, an incredible tale about a nerdy Dominican-American youth and his search for true love, weaved together with the rich histories of both his family and the Dominican Republic.
He has also written two critically acclaimed collections of short stories, Drown and This is How You Lose Her, the latter of which was a finalist for both the National Book Award for Fiction and the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction.
“Not only is Junot Díaz a prolific and amazing writer, but his works touch on timely and important themes such as the immigrant experience and class differences,” said CTSS co-dirctor Ben Zimmermann* in the press release.
Díaz has also been a powerful activist for human rights, calling attention to violations against immigrants in the United States, Haitian immigrants in the Dominican Republic and other issues around the world.
Díaz, currently a professor at MIT, will be discussing “his life, his activism and his writing” according to Rose.
The event will not be ticketed, but, in usual CTSS style, will be first come first serve.
*Ben Zimmerman currently serves as a senior section editor for North by Northwestern Magazine.