Department Chair

  • Erich Hertz
    Associate Professor of English
    Kiernan Hall 214
    (518) 782-6896

Greyfriar Lecture Series

Begun as an English Department lecture and literary reading series almost 60 years ago, the Greyfriar Living Literature Series has brought many of the best literary writers to campus to read from their work and teach workshops on writing or lead discussions of their writing. The list of writers hosted by the series is impressive; even early on Pulitzer Prize winning poet Gwendolyn Brooks, and new critic poet John Crowe Ransom, met students and faculty.

Most recently, the series has sponsored readings by Nobel Prize winning poet Derek Walcott, other Pulitzer Prize winning writers like Junot Dìaz, Natasha Tretheway, and Yusef Komanyakaa, as well as leading voices in Irish literature such as Eamon Grennan, Colum McCann and Claire Keegan, and many multi-cultural voices, most recently Gary Soto. In 2000, the series sponsored a series of readings and workshops by Siena alumni who have continued to write and publish their work: Christiane Farnan, David Baratier, Barbara Stewart and Edward Hoffman. The series remains committed to bringing exceptional literary talent to the campus. 

In April 2013, we welcomed internationally renowned novelist and poet Julia Alvarez.  This fall, on October 10, 2013, we are happy to welcome the novelists and short story writers Steve Stern and Steven Millhauser.