President's Lecture Series


Coleman Barks and Jonathan Kramer: "Rumi's Work with Community"

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Lecture Series

President's Lecture Series


Coleman Barks, professor emeritus of English, University of Georgia, discusses the poetry of the 13th century Sufi mystic, Jalāl al-Dīn Rūmī, his translations into English, and the community he led in Konya, Turkey, during the 13th century which eventually became known as the Whirling Dervishes.

Barks has spent 28 years collaborating with various Persian scholars to translate the poetry Jelaluddin Rumi. His work has accumulated into 18 volumes, resulting in a best-selling work, "Essential Rumi." Barks has also appeared in two hour-long Bill Moyers' specials on PBS and had his work included in the seventh edition of "The Norton Anthology of World Masterpieces."

A Morehead Scholar at the University of North Carolina, Barks taught poetry and creative writing for 34 years at various universities. Now retired, he received professor emeritus of English honors from the University of Georgia. Barks has published six volumes of his own poetry, along with his Rumi translations, which have sold more than half a million copies worldwide.

He is a recipient of numerous awards, including the first Guy Owen Poetry Prize from "Southern Poetry Review," the Pushcart Writer's Choice Award and the New England Review/Bread Loaf Quarterly Narrative Poem Prize. Recently Barks received the Juliet Hollister Award for his work in interfaith dialogue.

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Run Time

67:00 min


A 1/2" VHS copy of this lecture is available in the Special Collections & University Archives Department of Old Dominion University Perry Library. Call #: LD4331.A57 2004f

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