Book Launch Set for Hamblin Memoir

A reception and book launch for Dr. Robert Hamblin’s latest book, “My Life with Faulkner and Brodsky,” is scheduled for 4-6 p.m. Nov. 9 at Hamblin’s residence, 313 Themis St. in Cape Girardeau.

The public is invited.

The memoir, published for the Center for Faulkner Studies by Southeast Missouri State University Press, recounts the author’s career-long interest in the writings of William Faulkner, as well as Hamblin’s 36-year friendship and collaboration with Faulkner collector Louis Daniel Brodsky, who died in 2014.

That collaboration led to the acquisition of the Brodsky Collection of William Faulkner Materials by Southeast Missouri State University in 1988 and the subsequent establishment of the school’s Center for Faulkner Studies.  In the years since, the Center has become a major contributor to the field of Faulkner studies, attracting both American and international scholars to the Southeast campus to conduct research on the Nobel Prize-winning author.

The memoir includes chapters describing Hamblin’s study of Faulkner’s novels and milieu as a graduate student at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Faulkner’s home town; Brodsky’s activities as a Faulkner collector; the background story of Southeast’s acquisition of the Brodsky Collection; and Hamblin’s participation in the Oprah Winfrey Book Club’s “Summer of Faulkner” in 2005.  The book also includes a chapter on the interactions of Hamblin and Brodsky as fellow poets.

Christopher Rieger, professor of English at Southeast and Hamblin’s successor as director of the Center for Faulkner Studies, said, “All Faulkner scholars and readers will be grateful for this record of the Hamblin-Brodsky partnership, which has made notable contributions to our understanding of Faulkner’s life and work.”

Hamblin is a professor emeritus of English at Southeast Missouri State University, where he taught for 50 years.  He is the author or editor of 32 books, including 18 scholarly volumes, seven books of poems, four biographies, and three personal or family memoirs.