April 2013
Capstone April 2013 Howard University Capstone October 2012  
Edwidge Danticat Delivers Compelling Lecture
By Sarafina Wright, intern, Office of University Communications
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Edwidge Danticat - Ceasar
Haitian author Edwidge Danticat was the featured speaker during the 61st annual Charles Eaton Burch Memorial Lecture, which was held in Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel in February. The lecture is named after the head of the Department of English in the 1930s, who was an expert on 18th century British literature.

Danticat spoke passionately about the necessity of sharing one’s personal story.

“What are you built for?” she asked the audience. Then, responded, “I am built to tell stories, but also to take them in.”

She added: “There is no greater agony than burying an untold story inside of you. It is important to share our stories so that others can use it for comfort and inspiration. Diversity is about knowing each other’s story, not having different color faces in the room.” “It is important to share our stories so that others can use it for comfort and inspiration.”

Danticat expressed the need to find the commonality in others, and referenced works by Alice Walker and Zora Neal Hurston. She said that if more people practiced compassion and understanding, many misconceptions would be eliminated and personal and national relations would improve.

The award-winning author immigrated to the U.S. when she was 12 years old. Two years later she published her first work in English, “A Haitian-American Christmas: Cremace and Creole Theatre,” in a New York magazine. In 1994, she published her first novel, Breath, Eyes, Memory, which became a part of Oprah’s Book Club. Throughout her career she has received a number of awards, including the Caribbean Writer Fiction Award, the American Book Award and the Flaiano Prize for literature.
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