Novelist Colm Tóibín, author of 2009’s “Brooklyn,” will be the keynote speaker at Missouri Southern State University for this fall’s themed semester, which focuses on Ireland.
The author will discuss his bestselling novel Thursday at 7 p.m. in MSSU’s Taylor Performing Arts Center. He will also be signing copies of his book beginning at 6:30 pm and immediately following his presentation. Admission is free and open to the public.
Copies of “Brooklyn” will be available for purchase for $15. Attendees can bring their own copies of any of Tóibín’s books for the author to sign.
Several classes and a book club at MSSU are reading “Brooklyn” this semester to learn more about Irish culture, immigration to America, writing techniques, and the novel as an object of study and analysis. The novel tells the story of a young Irish immigrant in Brooklyn in the 1950s.
“Brooklyn” was made into an Academy Award-nominated film in 2015 starring Saoirse Ronan and Jim Broadbent. It will be screened Tuesday at 7 pm in Cornell Auditorium in MSSU’s Plaster Hall. James Jackson, a retired MSSU biology professor, will introduce the film. Admission is free and open to the public.
Tóibín was born in 1955 into a political family in Enniscorthy, a town south of Dublin. He is a novelist, short-story writer, essayist, journalist, critic, playwright and poet.
His literary works explore a number of important themes, including the nature of Irish society, living in exile, the legacy of Catholicism, the process of creativity, and the preservation of personal identity.
Tóibín is the Irene and Sidney B. Silverman Professor of the Humanities in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. He lives in Ireland and the United States.