Updike in Pennsylvania

The First Biennial John Updike Society Conference

Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the publication of rabbit, run Alvernia University, Reading Pa., Oct 1-Oct. 3.

Program information and Registration


On the First Biennial John Updike Society Conference

Jack De Bellis will serve as Program Director for the First Biennial John Updike Society Conference, while Dave Silcox will act as Site Director.

The conference, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the publication of Rabbit, Run, will take place in Reading, which Updike fictionalized as Brewer in the Rabbit novels.
Although participation is limited to members of The John Updike Society who have registered for the conference, new members are welcome. And several conference events will be free and open to the public, including panels featuring Updike classmates and the keynote speakers.

A special “Teaching John Updike” one-day conference will be open to high school teachers, who will attend special sessions presented by top Updike scholars. Details on conference sessions and speakers will be announced as the information becomes available.

For more information on The John Updike Society, see the Society’s webpage: http://blogs.iwu.edu/johnupdikesociety/

Note from Jim Plath
When I proposed the idea back in 2000, John wrote back, “Dear Jim, Your mention of an Updike Society brings to my mind a Beerbohm cartoon of Browning simpering among his society.” He was joking, but we both knew what he meant. Such a thing would have embarrassed him while he was alive. And yet, that part of him that looked toward the infinite future was secretly delighted that we would choose to honor him like that.

For an author, the greatest memorial is a coalition of readers and critics. And so I’m pleased to announce that Jack De Bellis, Jim Schiff, Larry Broer, Marshall Boswell, and myself will present a panel at the American Literature Association conference in Boston this May on “John Updike: Fifty Years of Literary Influence,” after which we’ll conduct an organizational meeting of the John Updike Society, which will be dedicated to fostering continued critical interest in John’s work.