Dorothy Allison, award-winning author lesbian and gay literature will speak 2-3:30 p.m. April 5, as part of the Literatures, Arts and Cultures of the Americas’ (LACA) Laureate Series at Fresno State, in the University Business Center, Room 192 of the Peters Business Building, Additionally, a reading and book signing will be held 7-9 p.m., in the Alice Peters Auditorium, Room 191. All events are free and open to the public.

The LACA Laureate Series brings prominent thinkers, writers and scholars of the Americas to Fresno State. Past speakers include authors Sandra Cisneros and Helena María Viramontes.

Allison received mainstream recognition with her 1992 novel “Bastard Out of Carolina,” which was a finalist for the 1992 National Book Award and won both the ALA Award for Lesbian and Gay Writing and the Ferro Grumley prize. It has become a national best-seller and was adapted into an award-winning film in 1996.

Additionally, Allison is an award-winning editor for “Quest, Conditions and Outlook.” Her book of poetry, “The Women Who Hate Me,” was published in 1983 followed by her short story collection, “Trash,” in 1988, which won two Lambda Literary Awards and the American Library Association Prize for Lesbian and Gay Writing. Allison was awarded the 2007 Robert Penn Warren Award for Fiction and is a member of the board of the Fellowship of Southern Writers.

Raised in Greenville, South Carolina, Allison was the first child of a fifteen-year-old mother and was the first of her family to graduate from high school. She continued her education at Florida Presbyterian College on a National Merit Scholarship before studying Anthropology at the New School for Social Research.

She now lives in Northern Carolina with her partner Alix and her teenage son and is working on an upcoming novel, “She Who.”

The LACA events are co-sponsored by Associated Students, Inc., the English Department; the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literature; Dr. Peter McDonald, dean of the Henry Madden Library; the Chicano Writers and Artists Association; the San Joaquin Literary Association; and the MFA Program in Creative Writing.

Parking in the University Business lots will be relaxed for the evening event. Seating is limited.

For more information, contact Alex Espinoza, professor in the English Department, at

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Dorothy Allison BIO

Copy prepared by University Communications news student assistant Alejandra Garcia.