Past Events


Paloma Valenzuela

The Short Film: A Conversation featuring Paloma Valenzuela and Marc Weinberg

Thursday, October 22nd


During the spring 2021 semester, writer, director, and producer Paloma Valenzuela will be joining the Creative Writing faculty and offering a screenwriting workshop called The Short Film. Enter the discussion as Ms. Valenzuela and Professor Marc Weinberg talk about her award-winning web series, The Pineapple Diaries, the challenges of writing short films, and the joys and heartbreaks of writing for the screen. 

Paloma Valenzuela is a Dominican-American writer, director and actress originally from the city of Boston. In 2010, she started La Gringa Loca Productions a multi-media production operation which has since produced stage plays and audiovisual projects both in Boston and the Dominican Republic: "RANT!" (play, 2008), "Show Up" (play, 2012), and "Queseyocuanto" (play, 2012), "Onomatopeyas Dominicanas" (web series, 2013­-2014), an official commercial for Miss Rizos Salón in Santo Domingo (2015 and 2016), a comedic Boston-based web series “The Pineapple Diaries” (2015-2016) and the official music video for the song "2020" by Dominican artist AcentOh. In 2018 "The Pineapple Diaries" was Official Selection at the New Orleans Film Festival.  In Spring 2021, she will teach “Screenwriting Workshop: Writing and Producing a Short Film” at Brandeis.

This event is co-sponsored by CAST (Creativity the Arts and Social Transformation).

Braided Memories: A Journey of Words and Photographs

Tuesday, October 20th

8-9pm, Zoom

Poet and scholar Marjorie Agosín and photographer Samuel Shats explore the truth that lies in fragmented memories, the legacy of refugees defined by truncated pasts, and the power of art as a vehicle for healing across generations. Join us for a multimedia presentation and panel discussion about the emotional, literary, and visual iterations of loss and reclaimed identity in post-Holocaust Latin American feminist literature.

Marjorie Agosín, Ph.D. Professor of Spanish, Wellesley College
Samuel Shats, Photographer
Elizabeth Bradfield, M.F.A. Associate Professor of the Practice of English and Co-Director of the Creative Writing Program
María Durán, Ph.D. Florence Levy Kay Fellow in U.S. Latinx Cultural Studies

Dalia Wassner, Ph.D. Director, HBI Project on Latin American Jewish & Gender Studies 

Brandeis Family Focus; Brandeis Alumni Association; Brandeis Creative Writing Program; Latin America Initiative, Brandeis International Business School; Wellesley Spanish Department; Museo Interactivo Judío de Chile; J-Lats Princeton

Larry Rosenwald: On Antiwar Literature

Friday, October 16th


An innovative and challenging account of antiwar literature. Innovative in doing justice to all the meanings of the term, and to a broader range of works than is usually considered when antiwar literature is being discussed; challenging in considering such questions as why so many notable antiwar actions have been so badly represented by literary writers, why and how works not themselves antiwar have inspired antiwar feeling, and whether antiwar literature is necessarily bad literature.

Bryan Washington

Thursday, October 8th


Bryan Washington is the author of Lot, an award-winning collection of interconnected short stories, several of which appeared first in the New Yorker (in fact, he has a new story in this most recent issue of the New Yorker). National Public Radio called Lot "a stunning work of art" and Barack Obama chose it as one of his favorite books of 2019. His first novel, Memorial, will be published in late October.  Mr. Washington lives in Houston, Texas and is the George Guion Williams Writer in Residence and Scholar in Residence for Racial Justice at Rice University.

Critical Conversations: Identity as an Engine for Poetry

Time: Wednesday, October 7th, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Location: This event will be accessible via Zoom with captioning.

What relation does poetry have to identity, and how does poetry help us to understand our role in the world? How do poets grapple with their own immigrant, Asian American, queer, gender or other identities? In what ways is poetry relevant to issues and concerns addressed by scientists and social scientists? Putting identity front and center in the creative practice means debunking the notion that the poet works within a vacuum, outside of specific time and place. Come explore how the poet discovers fresh connections between histories, lands and social worlds.


  • Elizabeth Bradfield, Associate Professor of the Practice of English and Co-director of the Creative Writing Program, Department of English.
  • Chen Chen, Jacob Ziskind Visiting Poet-in-Residence, Department of English.


  • Yuri Doolan, Chair, Asian American and Pacific Islander Studies; Assistant Professor, Department of History and Department of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies.
Micro-reading and Lunch Workshop with Grace Talusan

Tuesday, September 29th


Join the Creative Writing Department and Fannie Hurst Writer-in-Residence, Grace Talusan, on September 29th at Noon for a Micro Reading and lunch workshop! 

Professor Talusan’s short story, “The Book of Life and Death,” was recently selected as Boston’s 2020 “One City One Story” selection. She will give a brief reading followed by a generative writing workshop and an optional time to share what we write.

The whole event will run about one hour on Zoom. Eating your lunch is welcome!

Grace’s Story & Info about “One City One Story”

Brandeis Justice Initiative

September 17, 2020

The Brandeis Justice Initiative (BJI) aims to facilitate engagement, learning, and reflection about liberal education for people impacted by, or vulnerable to, incarceration. The BJI is hard at work identifying ways that Brandeis folks can tutor, mentor and teach in ways that make a meaningful and sustainable contribution to people within or in the shadow of the criminal justice system.

There are a variety of ways that all members of the Brandeis community can be involved, and we invite you all to attend an introductory event Thursday September 17th at 2 pm to learn more. The best way to let us know you are interested is to fill out a brief form on our website—it does not commit you to anything, but it ensures you will hear from us about opportunities that may appeal to you.  

Thanks to a generous Mellon grant from the Connected PhD Program, graduate students may even be able to earn stipends or complete supported internships that will further professional development while making a positive impact on the life trajectories of people eager for an opportunity to move forward in their lives.  
We look forward to seeing or speaking to you soon!
Rosalind Kabrhel (Legal Studies); John Plotz (English); Dave Sherman (English); Daniella Gati (BJI coordinator)


Creative Writing Senior Honors Reading

April 30, 2020



Graduate Student Presentations

April 21, 2020

Virtual Event


Abigail Arnold
"Narrative Intimacy and the Confidante."

Diana Filar
"Naming (in) the Immigrant Novel: Identity and Conditions of Belonging in 21st century Multiethnic Fiction"

Malaka Gharib

March 26, 2020


Virtual Event

Malaka Gharib is an editor and digital strategist at National Public Radio. Her first book, I Was Their American Dream, is a graphic memoir that focuses on her experience as a Filipino-Egyptian-American. In a starred review, Kirkus Reviews praised the book as "A heartwarming tribute to immigrant families and their descendants trying to live the American dream." 

Ed Lee

March 19, 2020

Virtual Event

Ed has written for many television comedies, including The Drew Carey ShowClass of 3000 and Are You There, Chelsea? In addition to writing for television, Ed has written and performed sketch and improv at iO West, Nerdmelt Theater, Westside Comedy Theater, and Upright Citizens Brigade Theater L.A.

Ed recently wrote and produced the short film Becoming Eddie which is based on his childhood. He is currently developing the short into a television series with a major studio.

Truth, or Your Truth? A Scientist and a Humanist on Facts, Data and Evidence

March 18, 2020

Virtual Event

Does evidence make something true? Is evidence even a necessary component of truth? The way we talk about what is real and what is true depends on perspective and context. The way we are trained to think and write can change what we think is true. This conversation pairs humanities and science faculty in a debate about the relationship between facts, truth and reality, and how evidence differs widely in different disciplines.



Sangeeta Ray

March 18, 2020

Virtual Event

Sangeeta Ray, Professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park, will deliver the annual Soli Sorabjee Lecture in South Asian Studies on March 18, 2020, at 12:00pm. The lecture is titled "Ecology of Intimacies: An Ethics, Aesthetics, and Politics of Reading Postcolonial Environmental Fiction."

Faith Smith Lecture

March 5, 2020


Skyline Commons

Inaugural M. Jacqui Alexander Lecture in African Diaspora Studies, featuring a talk by Prof. Faith Smith entitled, "After the Dance: Performing Sovereignty in the Early 20th-Century Caribbean." 

Mary Baine Campbell, Bridging the Two Cultures

March 5, 2020


MCH 303, Reading Room

“Dreaming and Sleep”
Leslie Griffith (Neuroscience) in conversation with Mary Baine Campbell (English)
Broadsides to Brandeis: An Evening of Artistic Response

February 24, 2020

Time: 6:30 - 8:00pm
Location: Abraham Shapiro Academic Complex (ASAC), Atrium 

Announcing the opening of the CAST (Creativity, the Arts, and Social Transformation) and Creative Writing exhibition space, outside the Creativity Lab on the top floor of the Abraham Shapiro Academic Complex!

Co-hosted by the CAST and Creative Writing UDRs, "Broadsides to Brandeis" celebrates our new permanent installation of the public art of Broadsided, a press founded by Brandeis professor Elizabeth Bradfield, co-director of the Creative Writing Program. Broadsided pulls literary work out of journals and puts it on the streets. It brings words together with the energy of original visual art, publishing monthly collaborations on the website as pdfs that are then downloaded, printed, and posted around the world by "Vectors."

Join us for an evening of poetry reading by Brandeis students and Professor Bradfield. Come 15 minutes early to choose a poem to read, or bring a poem of your own. 

There will be pizza for participants to enjoy as we celebrate creativity and social justice efforts by writers and visual artists.

Cameron Awkward-Rich

February 11, 2020


Bethelehem Chapel

Cameron Awkward-Rich is the author of Sympathetic Little Monster and Dispatch. His poetry has appeared in American Poetry Review, Academy of American Poets Poem-a-day, has won acclaim in spoken word circles, and explores the poetics of family and self from a black, trans vantage. Cameron has received fellowships from Cave Canem and Duke. He is an assistant professor of Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Graduate Student Presentations

November 21, 2019

MCH 303, Reading Room

Paige Eggebrecht
"Days at the Factories: Literary Form and Division of Labor"
Patrick Sylvain
"Haiti and Being: Zombie Obsession and Othering Pre & Post U.S. Military"
Daniella Gati
"Vignette Aesthetics across Media"

Reception at The Stein to follow