Cazenovia College will present the third talk of the Wheler Family Great Minds Lecture Series entitled A Poet for Troubled Times on March 15 at 2:30 p.m. Dr. Grazyna Kozaczka, professor of English and director of the All-College Honors Program, will present a selection of writings by Nobel Prize-winning Polish poet Wislawa Szymborska, as well as look at her whimsical and humorous collages. The lecture will be held in Coleman Hall, rooms A and B at Cazenovia College. It is free and open to the public.
Dr. Grazyna Kozaczka has been a member of the faculty at Cazenovia College for over 30 years. During this time, she has taught a variety of classes from academic writing to English specialty courses, including American Literature, American Ethnic Literature and Methods of Inquiry. Born and raised in Krakow, Poland, Kozaczka began her educational journey there and continues to travel back to Poland regularly.
Known for her research as well as her teaching, Kozaczka has published two books and numerous articles. She has done extensive research and writing about ethnic and women’s literature. As underrepresented areas, Kozaczka’s work is very important to the field.
Kozaczka also holds many honors including the 2016 Outstanding Pole of the Year award, which is given every year by the Polish Scholarship Fund to honor individuals for their contribution to Polish American communities. She is a past president of the Polish American Historical Association which honored her in 2017 with a Distinguished Service Award. She is also a member of the Polish Institute of Arts and Sciences of America, The Jozef Pilsudski Institute of America, and the Modern Language Association.
Szymborska’s poetry is recognized for offering readers a key to understanding our chaotic and dangerous world and our own place within it. Her writings were shaped by her experiences during World War II and communist rule in postwar Poland. Szymborska was awarded several prizes throughout her lifetime including the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1996 and Poland’s highest merit honor, Order of the White Eagle in 2011. In this presentation, Kozaczka’s background and experience will bring a unique perspective to Szymborska’s body of work.