Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series


Now in its thirty-second year, the Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series (CAALS) is an annual event bringing a nationally known African-American author to the Marygrove campus for a public lecture and class session or conversation. Through the generous support of foundations, corporate donors, advertisers, friends, Marygrove College alumni and Board of Trustees members, and the Lillian and Don Bauder Endowment, the series has remained free and accessible to the entire metropolitan Detroit community. To date, nearly 10,000 people have attended the Friday night public readings to hear outstanding writers share their work, and thousands of Detroit area high school and college students as well as others in the Detroit community have studied these works and attended class sessions with guest authors in the series.

The Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series and Defining Detroit, a program of the Institute for Detroit Studies at Marygrove, have brought to Detroit audiences the recipients of eleven MacArthur “Genius” Grants, ten National Book Awards, eight Guggenheim Fellowships, seven Pulitzer Prizes, five Pushcart Prizes, three Emmy Awards, and one Man Booker Prize. In addition, the two series have welcomed three U.S. Poets Laureate and one Presidential Inaugural Poet.