Writes of Passage captures the essence of a universal human experience in literature that has enticed generations of readers: that moment in both fictional and real life when innocence and naivete evolve into an understanding of the world's greater moral complexity. Collected from the last twenty-five years of The Hudson Review, the stories and memoirs in this book, by both emerging writers and established storytellers like Elizabeth Spencer, William Trevor, and Tennessee Williams, were first published in the literary quarterly based on their own merits, without regard to a developing genre. The editors of The Hudson Review became aware of a unifying theme through the magazine's Writers in the Schools program, which brought many of these works to students in two Harlem high schools.
Paula Deitz has been the editor of The Hudson Review since 1998. Dean Flower is professor of English Language and Literature at Smith College and an advisory editor for The Hudson Review.
It is truly gift that these wonderful short stories and memoirs have been complied in this book. I can speak from experience that these works can motivate and inspire students to see literature in personal, interesting, and fun way. Elise Juska's 'Northeast Pilly Girls,' Jacqueline W. Brown's 'Willie,' Paula Whyman's 'Driver's Education,' and Jan Ellison's 'The Color of Wheat in Winter' are permanent part of curriculum. These beautifully crafted and moving stories speak volumes to my students year after year. I have been fortunate enough to have been working with Paula Deitz and the inspiring The Hudson Review's Writers in Schools Program for six years. My students have benefited tremendously from the intelligent and thought-provoking writers and poets who have visited our classroom. Students have not only read and studied cutting edge and age appropriate works from The Hudson Review, but they have had the privilege of personally meeting these writers. I have witnessed the excitement that each visit has generated; students have been touched by the these stories and memoirs in Writes of Passage-they see their own lives, their dreams, and their immediate concerns in these timely works. It is truly amazing and heartwarming (for me as a teacher) to see New York City public school students actively read a short story or a memoir from one of the nation's most prestigious literary magazines, enthusiastically study and discuss the literary work in class, and then actually meet the author. This is truly a learning experience. The Writes of Passage should be a required anthology for all high school students. The stories inside this precious book will get teachers and students thinking, speaking, and feeling. -- Afonso S. Albergaria Jr. These are wonderful stories for all ages-coming or going. -- Lily Tuck I have benefited greatly from the personal stories of artists I admire. They have provided me with maps to measure against my own conquests. Here is a book aimed at the very thing I aim to measure: the process of triumph. -- Saul Williams Its many artful individual selections...will offer satisfactions and revelations to readers of all ages. -- Michael Cart Booklist Readers who pick up Writes of Passage are in for a treat: the best writing they've seen in a long time, and tales they'll remember for years. -- Susan Balee Hudson Review Innocence lost: That is the theme uniting the pieces collected in Writes of Passage: Coming-of-Age Stories and Memoirs from The Hudson Review...But-and this is what makes this book unique-the idea for Writes of Passage didn't originate in a desire to simply showcase the talent that has visited its pages over the years. This collection originated in a program at two Harlem high schools where The Hudson Review ran a Writers in the Schools program. Los Angeles Times
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