Claremont, Calif. (April 16, 2012) — Pitzer College President Laura Skandera Trombley will deliver the keynote address at “Complicating Twain: Biography, Autobiography and the Personal Scholar: Remembering Michael J. Kiskis,” a symposium hosted by the Elmira College Center for Mark Twain Studies and the Mark Twain Circle of America. The symposium will be held at Elmira College and Quarry Farm in New York on October 19-20, 2012.
Trombley is a noted Mark Twain scholar whose fifth book, Mark Twain’s Other Woman: The Hidden Story of His Final Years, was issued in paperback by Vintage/Anchor in 2011. Her other books include Constructing Mark Twain: New Directions in Scholarship (2002) and Mark Twain in the Company of Women (1994), which was selected by Choice as one of the outstanding academic books of 1995. As a graduate student, Trombley discovered the largest known cache of Mark Twain letters and wrote her dissertation, The Charmed Circle, on Twain, women and “the integration of imagination.” Trombley appeared in Ken Burns’ documentary on Mark Twain and is a member of the Mark Twain Circle of America.
The symposium will honor the work of the late Michael Kiskis, a Mark Twain scholar and Leonard Tydings Grant Professor of American Literature at Elmira College.
The Center for Mark Twain Studies offers a graduate certificate in Mark Twain Studies, hosts a quadrennial Mark Twain Conference and awards the Quarry Farm Fellowships. Quarry Farm, on the outskirts of Elmira, was owned by the family of Twain’s wife, Olivia Louise Langdon. Twain and his family spent many summers on the farm in the 1870s and 1880s. During those years, Twain wrote a number of works, including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.