Novelist John Updike To Deliver Phi Beta Kappa Lecture Nov. 8

Oct. 15, 2001
News Photo 64

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist John Updike will present Baylor University's annual Roy B. Albaugh Phi Beta Kappa lecture at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, in Waco Hall on campus. The presentation is free and open to the public, and tickets are not required.

"We're excited about having such an incredibly versatile and world-renowned writer as John Updike come to speak at Baylor. Updike's career-long concern with the centrality of religious belief in our lives should appeal to many people," said Dr. Todd Copeland, editor of the Baylor Line and chair of the Albaugh lecture committee.

A Pennsylvania native, Updike graduated summa cum laude from Harvard University in 1954. He was a staff writer at the New Yorker from 1955-57 and has written more than 50 books, including novels and collections of short stories, poems and essays.

Updike is best known for his series of four novels that chronicle the life and times of Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom. Written over the span of 30 years and hailed as a definitive saga of middle-class America, the series began with "Rabbit, Run" in 1960 and "Rabbit Redux" in 1971. Those books were followed by "Rabbit Is Rich" in 1981 and "Rabbit at Rest" in 1990, both of which won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

Updike's other novels include "The Witches of Eastwick" and "In the Beauty of the Lilies."

Updike has received numerous awards, including the National Book Award, the American Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the O. Henry Prize and the National Medal of the Arts. He was elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1964 and to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1977.

Each year, the Baylor Phi Beta Kappa chapter presents a public lecture by a distinguished scholar. The Roy B. Albaugh Phi Beta Kappa Lectureship was endowed in the late 1970s by Mrs. Oma Buchanan Albaugh in memory of her late husband, a Waco business and civic leader.

For more information about the event, call Baylor's office of public relations at (254) 710-1961. For more information about Phi Beta Kappa or the lecture series, visit

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