Abenaki storyteller to speak at SUNY Adirondack

Abenaki storyteller Joseph Bruchac
October 02, 2023

Saratoga Springs poet laureate Joseph Bruchac celebrates indigenous culture

QUEENSBURY, New York (Oct. 2, 2023) — Abenaki author, storyteller and Saratoga Springs poet laureate Joseph Bruchac will speak at 12:40 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9, presented by The Writers Project and SUNY Adirondack Office of Diversity as part of a college-wide celebration of Indigenous People’s Month.

The free talk will be held in the college’s Visual Arts Gallery in Dearlove Hall.

Bruchac edited a number of highly praised anthologies of contemporary poetry and fiction, including “Songs from this Earth on Turtle's Back,” “Breaking Silence” (winner of an American Book Award) and “Returning the Gift.” 

His poems, articles and stories have appeared in more than 500 publications, including American Poetry Review, National Geographic and Smithsonian Magazine. He has written more than 120 books for adults and children, including “The First Strawberries,” “Keepers of the Earth” (co-authored with Michael Caduto), "Tell Me a Tale,” his autobiography, “Bowman's Store,” and novels “Dawn Land,” “The Waters Between,” “Arrow Over the Door” and “The Heart of a Chief.” His books about Native American life are praised for their accuracy and quality.

Bruchac earned a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, a master’s degree in Literature and Creative Writing from Syracuse University, and a doctorate in Comparative Literature from the Union Institute of Ohio. 

He and his late wife founded the Greenfield Review Literary Center and The Greenfield Review Press. He was awarded a Rockefeller Humanities fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts Writing Fellowship for Poetry, the Cherokee Nation Prose Award, the Knickerbocker Award, the Hope S. Dean Award for Notable Achievement in Children's Literature, and the 1998 Writer of the Year Award and 1998 Storyteller of the Year Award from Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers. In 1999, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Native Writers Circle of the Americas.

Bruchac is professional teller of traditional stories of the Adirondacks and Northeastern native peoples. He has performed widely throughout the United States and Europe, and delivers programs at schools throughout the country. 

Bruchac, his sister and sons work to preserve Abenaki culture, language and traditional Native skills. 

The Writers Project series continues with the following events:

  • Monday, Oct. 23: Stuart Bartow, beloved retired SUNY Adirondack professor of English, will offer a combined reading and workshop at 12:40 p.m. in the Visual Arts Gallery.
  • Monday, Oct. 30: LGBTQ fiction writer Lannie Stabile will speak at 12:40 p.m. via Zoom. Guests are invited to watch it live-streamed in the Visual Arts Gallery. Her books are available in the college bookstore.
  • Monday, Nov. 27: Award-winning poet Barbara Ungar will speak at 12:40 p.m. in the Visual Arts Gallery. Books will be available at the event.
  • Monday, Dec. 4: Editor Walter McLaughlin of Wood Thrush Books will speak at 12:40 p.m. in the Visual Arts Gallery. Books will be available. 

All events are free and open to the public. Each is also offered via Zoom, at https://us06web.zoom.us/j/5365910760?pwd=dzBVNEhNSi9rM2w5KzQ0V0ZzOWVudz09,with Meeting ID: 536 591 0760 and Passcode: 12345.