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Ransom Center Hosts Variety of Public Programs in March

EVENT: The Harry Ransom Center hosts free public programs.

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EVENT: The Harry Ransom Center hosts free public programs.

WHEN: Various dates throughout March

WHERE: Harry Ransom Center at The University of Texas at Austin, 21st and Guadalupe streets. View a map online.

BACKGROUND: All events are free and open to the public. Please note that the Ransom Center’s Charles Nelson Prothro Theater has limited seating. Line forms upon arrival of the first person, and doors open 30 minutes in advance.

John Banville
Tuesday, March 2, at 7 p.m.
Booker Prize-winning author of “The Sea,” Banville, reads from his new novel, “The Infinities.” A book signing follows. This program will be webcast live at www.hrc.utexas.edu/webcast.

In Banville’s novel, Adam Godley, a renowned theoretical mathematician, is dying. His family gathers at his bedside: his son, young Adam, struggling to maintain his marriage to a radiantly beautiful actress; his 19-year-old daughter, Petra, filled with voices and visions as she waits for the inevitable; their stepmother, Ursula, whose relations with the Godley children are strained at best. But the Godley family is not alone in their vigil. Around them hovers a family of mischievous immortals-among them Zeus, who has his eye on young Adam’s wife; Pan, who has taken the doughy form of an old unwelcome acquaintance; and Hermes, the genial and omniscient narrator: “We too are petty and vindictive,” he tells us, “just like you, when we are put to it.”

Banville was born in Wexford, Ireland, in 1945. His first book, “Long Lankin,” was published in 1970. Among his other books are “Nightspawn,” “Birchwood,” “The Newton Letter,” “Mefisto” and “The Book of Evidence” (which was short-listed for the 1989 Booker Prize). He has also received a literary award from the Lannan Foundation. He is the former literary editor of the Irish Times and lives in Dublin.

Poetry on the Plaza: “The Poetry of Africa”
Wednesday, March 3, at noon
The Harry Ransom Center presents the Poetry on the Plaza event “The Poetry of Africa.” Readers, including Emeritus Professor Bernth Lindfors and Michener Center writers Ladan Osman and Roger Reeves, will present works by African poets in celebration of the Ransom Center’s acquisition of the Charles R. Larson collection of African, African-American and Native-American literature. Refreshments will be served at this event.

“Lighting and Camerawork in the Films of David O. Selznick”
Thursday, March 4, at 7 p.m.
Patrick Keating, author of “Hollywood Lighting from the Silent Era to Film Noir,” discusses the history and evolution of lighting in Hollywood. Famous for his demanding approach to directors and stars, the producer David O. Selznick could be just as exacting when it came to cinematography, pushing his cinematographers to experiment with lighting, color and camera movement. Drawing on archival sources, this lecture examines the process of collaboration behind the cinematography for several landmark films, including “Gone With The Wind” (1939) and “Indiscretion of an American Wife” (1953). 

Keating is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication at Trinity University, where he teaches courses in film and media studies. This program, which will be webcast live at www.hrc.utexas.edu/webcast, is presented in conjunction with the exhibition “Making Movies.”
Curator’s Tour of “Making Movies”
Thursday, March 25, at 7 p.m.
Steve Wilson, the Ransom Center’s associate curator of film, leads a free gallery tour of “Making Movies.” Featuring items from the Ransom Center’s extensive film collections, “Making Movies” reveals the collaborative nature of the filmmaking process and focuses on how the artists involved-from writers to directors, actors to cinematographers-transform the written word into moving image.

If you are unable to attend the curator’s tour, free docent-led tours of “Making Movies” are offered Tuesdays at noon and Saturdays at 2 p.m. The exhibition runs through Aug. 1.

High-resolution press images relating to all events are available.