Bestselling author Sarah Vowell appears at Lafayette College on Wednesday, February 10, 2016 at 7:00 PM to discuss her latest book, Lafayette in the Somewhat United States, described as an unconventional account of the Marquis de Lafayette’s service in Washington’s army, as part of the Jones Visiting Lecture series.
Her work explores how the young French aristocrat expected to discover an America united by the ideals of the Enlightenment but instead found divided allegiances — revolutionaries and loyalists — and a Congress often at odds with the Continental Army.
Vowell has written seven nonfiction books on American History, including Assassination Vacation and The Partly Cloudy Patriot. Described as the “Queen of the literary hipster nerds” by Vanity Fair, Vowell is an American author, journalist, essayist, social commentator, and actress. She was a contributing editor for “This American Life” from 1996-2008, producing numerous commentaries and documentaries for the weekly public radio show broadcast and touring the country for many of its live shows. She has made several appearances on the “Late Show” with David Letterman, “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” and “The Daily Show” with Jon Stewart.
Vowell is known for examining the connections between the American past and present. he offers personal, often humorous, accounts of everything from presidents and their assassins to colonial religious fanatics, as well as thoughts on American Indians, utopian dreamers, pop music, and the odd cranky cartographer.
You may recognize Vowell’s voice from the Pixar animated film “The Incredibles,” for which where she provided the voice for Violet Parr, the shy teenager. Born in Muskogee, Oklahoma, Vowell earned a B.A. from Montana State University in 1993 in modern languages and literatures and a M.A. in art history at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1996.
The Thomas Roy and Lura Forrest Jones Visiting Lecture Series was founded by Trustee Emeritus Thomas Roy Jones in 1973 to provide Lafayette College students with the opportunity to hear presentations by and interact with individuals of exemplary accomplishment in the academic world or in public life.
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