William Deresiewicz to Deliver Celebration of Teaching Keynote Address

William Deresiewicz
William Deresiewicz

Award-winning essayist and critic William Deresiewicz will deliver the keynote address at the University of Missouri’s Celebration of Teaching at 1 p.m. on May 17. Deresiewicz is the author of the best-selling book Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a Meaningful Life. He is a frequent college speaker, discussing topics that include “Higher Education: Crisis and Purpose,” “Creativity in the New Century,” “Leadership and the Inner Life,” and “What Jane Austen Has to Teach Us.”

Deresiewicz is a contributing writer for The Nation and a contributing editor for The American Scholar. His work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, Harper’s, The New Republic, Slate, Bookforum, The Chronicle of Higher Education and The London Review of Books. His essay, “The Disadvantages of an Elite Education” has been viewed more than one million times online.

He was professor of English at Yale for 10 years and a graduate instructor at Columbia for five. Deresiewicz received his Ph.D. from Columbia, where he also earned three Master’s degrees. As a professor, Deresiewicz taught courses in modern British fiction, the Great Books, Indian fiction and writing.

In 2013, Deresiewicz served as a William F. Podlich Distinguished Fellow at Claremont McKenna and in 2015, he occupied the Mary Routt Endowed Chair of Writing at Scripps. In 2016, he will serve as an NEH-Hannah Arendt Center Visiting Distinguished Lecturer at Bard.

Deresiewicz received the 2013 Hiett Prize in the Humanities from The Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture. He was nominated for National Magazine Awards in 2008, 2009 and 2011, and won the National Book Critics Circle’s Nona A. Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing for 2012, having been a finalist on three previous occasions.

The Celebration of Teaching will be held at the University of Missouri May 17-18. Deresiewicz’s keynote address will take place in Jesse Auditorium. The two-day event includes workshops and discussion sessions and is open to all faculty, staff and graduate instructors at MU.

For more information, visit celebration.missouri.edu.