Poet Laureate of North Carolina, Joseph Bathanti, will serve this month as the first Scholar-in-Residence at Carnegie Mellon University’s Senator John Heinz History Center’s Italian American Collection.
A Pittsburgh native and professor of creative writing at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C., Bathanti will produce an original body of work inspired by his research in the History Center’s Italian American Collection, which consists of several hundred artifacts, thousands of archival records, and more than 300 oral histories from local residents.
The author of eight poetry books, Bathanti’s first novel, “East Liberty,” won the Carolina Novel Award in 2001 and draws from his personal experiences growing up in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood. Bathanti earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English literature at the University of Pittsburgh and is a mentor in the creative writing M.F.A. program at Carlow University.
The Heinz History Center is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. Bathanti’s schedule is at www.heinzhistorycenter.org