Zsuzsanna Nagy

Julia Spicher Kasdorf

Environmental, Film, Photography, Poetry

Poet, essayist, and editor Julia Spicher Kasdorf has written four books of poetry: Sleeping Preacher (1992), Eve’s Striptease (1998), Poetry in America (2011), and Shale Play: Poems and Photographs from the Fracking Fields (2018). Sleeping Preacher won the Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize and the Great Lakes Colleges Association Award for New Writing. Karsdorf has also received a Pushcart Prize and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry.

Karsdorf’s work explores the relationships people have with their home communities and places, and also those places they choose to inhabit. Her writing is often concerned with social and environmental justice. Past projects along these lines include a collection of essays, The Body and the Book: Writing from a Mennonite Life (2001) and the biographical study Fixing Tradition: Joseph W. Yoder, Amish American (2002).

Karsdorf is currently at work with photographer Steven Rubin on Home Place, a documentary project about farmers working within 30 miles of her house in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania. She is also Liberal Arts Professor of English at Penn State, where she teaches creative writing.

Festival Years: 2006, 2012