Armstrong Browning Library to Host Browning Day

April 23, 2013

In honor of Robert Browning's 201st birthday, the Armstrong Browning Library welcomes the Baylor community and the public for a free concert and lecture as part of its annual Browning Day celebrations. Browning Day will be held in the McLean Foyer of Meditation of the Armstrong Browning Library on the Baylor University Campus on Tuesday, May 7, at 3:30 p.m. Festivities for the day will feature music composed by Artist-in-Residence, Carlos Colón, a lecture by Dr. Cornelia Pearsall, Professor of English Language and Literature from Smith College, and, weather permitting, refreshments in the Garden of Contentment.

Robert Browning was born May 7, 1812, in Camberwell, a district of London, England. Browning Day was initiated by Dr. A.J. Armstrong, Chair of the English Department of Baylor University and founder of the Armstrong Browning Library, some time following his arrival to Baylor in 1912.

Dr. Pearsall's lecture, "Browning and the Traumatic Monologue," will explore "trauma, wounding, broken things and darkening paths." Pearsall notes that these topics may not initially seem in keeping with the celebratory nature of Browning Day, but "they explore ways that representations of potentially disabling events or states were in fact enabling for Browning's poetry." Her lecture will pay particular attention to "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came" (1855) and to the emergent field of Disability Studies. Pearson will examine the ways traumatic events are not only depicted but performed in the dramatic monologue and conceived as poetically productive.

Rita Patteson, Director of the Armstrong Browning Library and host of this year's Browning Day celebration said that she is "pleased that Carlos Colón, our artist-in-residence, is preparing a composition that centered around the idea of a dramatic monologue." Baylor alum Keron Jackson, a dramatic operatic bass, is scheduled to perform.

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