Chatham News

Award-Winning Children’s Book Author, Lois Lowry, to Speak at Chatham University Nov 23, 2015

PITTSBURGH:  Award-winning children’s book author, Lois Lowry, will discuss her work and answer questions on Monday, November 23, 2015, at 1:00 pm in the Welker Room, James Laughlin Music Hall, on Chatham University’s Shadyside Campus.

Held in collaboration with Chatham University’s MFA in Creative Writing program and Pittsburgh Arts and Lectures, the event is free and open to the public.

Lois Lowry is an American writer credited with more than thirty children’s books.  She has won two Newbery Medals, for Number the Stars in 1990 and The Giver in 1994.  For her contribution as a children’s writer, she was a finalist in 2000 (and U.S. nominee again in 2004) for the biennial, international Hans Christian Andersen Award, the highest recognition available to creators of children’s books.  Her book Gooney Bird Greene won the 2002 Rhode Island Children’s Book Award. In 2007 she received the Margaret Edwards Award from the American Library Association for her contribution in writing for teens. In 2011 she gave the May Hill Arbuthnot Lecture; her lecture was titled “UNLEAVING: The Staying Power of Gold.” She was also awarded an honorary Doctorate of Letters by Brown University in 2014.

As an author, Lowry is known for writing about difficult subject matters within her works for children.  She has explored such complex issues as racism, terminal illness, murder, and the Holocaust among other challenging topics.  She has also explored controversial issues of questioning authority such as in The Giver quartet.  Her writing on such matters has brought her both praise and criticism. In particular, her work The Giver, the first novel in The Giver quartet, has been met with a diversity of reactions from schools in America, some of which have adopted it as a part of the mandatory curriculum, while others have prohibited the book’s inclusion in classroom studies. The Giver has also been made into a film, also called The Giver, which was released in 2014

Praise for The Giver
“The story has been told before in a variety of forms—Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 comes to mind—but not, to my knowledge, for children. It’s well worth telling, especially by a writer of Lowry’s great skill. If it is exceedingly fragile—if, in other words, some situations do not survive that well-known suspension of disbelief—well, so be it. The Giver has things to say that cannot be said too often, and I hope there will be many, many young people who will be willing to listen.” – Natalie Babbitt , The Washington Post

Praise for Son:
 “In many ways, Lowry invented the contemporary young adult dystopian novel. Now, nearly 20 years later — and with a glut of fictional oppressive societies leaving many of us with a bit of dystopia fatigue — she’s returned with a concluding volume that gloriously rebels against the restraints of the very genre she helped to create.” – Robin Wasserman, The New York Times