Belles Lettres Literary Society
Dickinson students enjoy lunch with award-winning poet, Rita Dova.
The Belles Lettres Literary Society (est. 1786) is the oldest student organization at the College and one of the oldest literary societies in the country. Belles Lettres is the parent organization of Dickinson's national literary magazine, The Dickinson Review. Staffed entirely by students, TDR has featured work from many prominent contemporary writers and has a rapidly growing list of subscribers. Belles Lettres also sponsors The Bonfire. Dickinson's student literary magazine. The Bonfire is staffed by members of Belles Lettres and features work by Dickinson's most talented student writers. Other Belles Lettres activities include student poetry readings (at least once a semester), a weekly show on the college's radio station (featuring student work), and special literary-themed parties and events. Professor Susan Perabo, writer-in-residence at the College, serves as the faculty adviser for both Belles Lettres and The Dickinson Review.
Dickinson offers numerous opportunities for our students to meet inspiring writers.
The Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program
Jean Louise Stellfox ’60 was inspired to become an English teacher after meeting Robert Frost during the poet’s visit to Dickinson in 1959. When she died suddenly in 2003, Stellfox’s estate provided $1.5 million to the college to continue her mission of inspiring students through literature. Stellfox wished to honor her parents with her gift, so The Harold and Ethel L. Stellfox Visiting Scholars and Writers Program was created and continues to bring renowned literary figures to campus.
While in residency at Dickinson, the distinguished recipient visits classes, holds a seminar for aspiring writers, gives readings and presentations and shares meals with students and faculty. A monetary award accompanies the residency.
To read more about the previous recipients and view photos from their visits to Dickinson, visit our web site: http://www.dickinson.edu/news-and-events/awards/The-Stellfox-Award/
- Fall 2012 - David Henry Hwang, Tony Award-winning playwright
- Fall 2011 - Margaret Atwood, Booker Prize-winning, novelist, poet, literary critic, essayist and environmental activist
- Spring 2011 - Richard Russo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author
- 2009 - Maxine Kumin, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet
- 2008 - Mario Vargas Llosa, novelist, playwright, essayist, journalist, literary critic and 2010 recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature
- 2007 - Edward Albee, three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright
- 2006 - Rita Dove, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet
- 2005 - Ian McEwan, Booker Award-winning British novelist
Belfer Reading Series
The Belfer lectureship brings a recognized author to Dickinson to read and visit classes at Dickinson.
- Spring 2012 - Elyse Fenton, Award-winning poet
- Thomas Bailey, Novelist and creative writer
- Cleopatra Mathis, Award-winning poet
- Susan Stewart '73, Award-winning poet and critic
- Brock Clarke '90, Award-winning novelist
- Tobias Wolff, Prize-winning novelist and creative writer
- Rick Moody, Award-winning novelist