Mary Mayhew Bergman Lecture

Jennifer Robertson on 11.13.15

New Hampshire Institute of Art Announces

Visiting Writers Series Event Featuring Megan Mayhew Bergman


Manchester, NH (November 12, 2015) — New Hampshire Institute of Art (NHIA) is pleased to announce a new speaker in their 2015-16 Visiting Writers Series. On November 18, 6-7pm, NHIA will host writer Mary Mayhew Bergman. The reading is free and open to the public and will be held at NHIA, 148 Concord St, Manchester, NH.

NHIA selected Bergman for this series because she is a masterful short story writer. She is distinctive among short story writers in having put together such a wide-ranging yet focused collection. Scribner published her first story collection, Birds of a Lesser Paradise, in March 2012, which was a Barnes and Noble Discover pick, Indie Next selection, and one of Huffington Post's Best Books of 2012.  Scribner also published Almost Famous Women, in January 2015, also an Indie Next selection, and NEIBA Bestseller.  In Almost Famous Women, Bergman takes actual historical women who were pushed to the margins either by the individuals in their lives or by historical circumstance and usually some combination. She places the spotlight squarely on them without glamorizing or airbrushing their faults and complexities.

Bergman is also a socially conscious and engaged writer off the page, a model of an artist who is concerned with community and with service. She writes a sustainability column for the magazine Salon, and recently spent time in northern Kenya participating with the BOMA Project, which aims to provide women with the means to start their own businesses and sustain them over long periods of time, thus enabling them to "graduate from poverty," in the organization's own terms. 

Bergman was raised in North Carolina and now lives on a small farm in Vermont. She studied anthropology at Wake Forest University, and completed graduate degrees at Duke University (MA) and Bennington College (MFA). She has had fellowships from Breadloaf and the Millay Colony for the Arts.  The Fellowship of Southern Writers will award her the Garrett Award for Fiction in April 2015. The American Library in Paris has awarded her a fellowship for 2016. She is currently the Associate Director of Bennington College's MFA program.

About the Visiting Writers Series

The NHIA Visiting Writer Series provides an opportunity for students, faculty, staff, and the community to meet nationally renowned writers in an open forum that is both social and interactive. Every event is free and open to the public so that anyone who has a love of reading and writing has the opportunity to engage with these highly talented writers and hear excerpts from their latest work.