The University of Iowa

‘City of Literature’ Film Screening to Anchor Oct. 14 Event at Englert

The Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature organization will , “City of Literature,” at a special event from 2-4 p.m. Oct. 14 at the Englert Theatre in Iowa City.

The film, made by local filmmakers  Ben Hill and John Richard, answers the question, “How did the Midwestern college town of Iowa City, Iowa, become the capital of creative writing in America?” It’s a story of literary ambition, academic innovation, and a promising young poet who became a cultural entrepreneur.

A panel discussion about the literary culture of Iowa City will follow the screening, featuring Marvin Bell, former Iowa Poet Laureate and longtime University of Iowa Writer’s Workshop instructor; Loren Glass, UI associate professor of English; and Jim Harris, former Prairie Lights Books owner.

In addition, the City of Literature will release its fiscal 2012 annual report and share brief details about a new statewide student essay context. The event will close with the unveiling of a new iteration of the popular City of Lit app, created by the UI Digital Studio for Public Humanities, which has been improved and now will be available on all devices.

“If anyone wonders why Iowa City was honored with UNESCO’s City of Literature designation, this film answers that question in spirited fashion,” said John Kenyon, City of Literature executive director. “And the chance to share the viewing experience with members of our community, and to see larger-than-life figures like Paul Engle on the Englert’s big screen makes this screening the perfect opportunity to see this inspiring film.”

Tickets for the event are $12 for adults, $8 for students, and are available at the Englert box office, (319) 688-2653, ext. 1, or online at