Luis Alberto Urrea: 2018 MLK Lecture

Luis Alberto Urrea: 2018 MLK Lecture

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Pulitzer Prize finalist and prolific author Luis Alberto Urrea will give Siena’s annual King Lecture on Thursday, March 15.

Urrea will present “Universal Border: From Tijuana to the World” at 7PM in the Sarazen Student Union. This is the 31st annual Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King Lecture on Race and Nonviolent Social Change.

Born in Tijuana to a Mexican father and American mother, he is mostly recognized as a “border writer,” though he says, “I am more interested in bridges, not borders.”

His newest novel, The House of Broken Angels, will be released this month. It is about a Mexican-American patriarch who knows it is his last birthday, and wants to gather his family for a final fiesta.

While he is visiting Siena, Urrea will meet with two literature classes and have coffee with students, according to Dr. Lisa Nevarez, professor of English.

Urrea was a finalist for the nonfiction Pulitzer in 2005 for The Devil’s Highway, an account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert. A member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, he has won numerous awards for his poetry, fiction and essays. Last year, he received the American Academy of Arts and Letters Fiction Award, and his collection of short stories, The Water Museum, was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and named a best book of the year by The Washington Post and Kirkus Reviews, among others.

Times Union Editor Rex Smith will introduce Urrea for his Siena talk.

Admission is free and open to the public.