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Scholars' Symposia

The UT Scholars’ Symposia was created to introduce The University of Tampa community to vibrant researchers and writers from all over the nation. It is an annual event that features good food, great conversation, book signings (when available) and question-and-answer sessions with the scholar. The program welcomes anyone who would like to share his or her scholarship. Those interested in participating should contact Sarah Juliet Lauro, the symposia’s director, at

For more on see UT's English and Writing department.

Spring 2018


Caleb Smith

The Life and the Adventures of a Haunted Convict

Feb. 16, 2018

Time: 4 p.m.
Location: Crescent Room, 9th floor Vaughn
Sponsored by the Department of English and Writing

About Caleb Smith

Caleb Smith is professor of English and American studies at Yale University. He is the author of The Prison and the American Imagination (Yale UP, 2009) and The Oracle and the Curse (Harvard UP, 2013) and the editor of Austin Reed’s The Life and the Adventures of a Haunted Convict (Random House, 2016). He has written about literature and the arts for Avidly, Bomb, Paper Monument and the Los Angeles Review of Books, where he is a contributing editor.

About the Presentation

Title: The Life and Adventures of a Haunted Convict

This lecture introduces The Life and the Adventures of a Haunted Convict (1858), the recently recovered memoir of an African American inmate at New York’s Auburn State Prison. It considers Reed’s account of indentured servitude, a juvenile reformatory and an industrial prison—scenes of captivity and unfree labor that he connected to slavery in the South. The lecture also touches on the discovery and authentication of Reed’s manuscript and the strange artistry of his writing.

Former Guests

View former guests for the Scholars' Symposia...

Fall 2017

Alisha Gaines

Alisha Gaines
Fantasies of Empathy and the Age of Trump
Sept. 22, 2017

Spring 2017

Dan Walden

Dan Walden
A Hell of Our Own
Jan. 27, 2017

Fall 2016

Jonathan Beecher Field

Jonathan Beecher Field
Monstrous Births
Sept. 15, 2016

Spring 2016


Professor Emma Rees
Feb. 11, 2016

Fall 2015


Eric Hayot
On Literary Worlds
Sept. 18, 2015

Fall 2014


Erica Williams
Clicks, Likes and Online Social Change
Sept. 26, 2014

Spring 2014

Barry Estabrook and The Coalition of Immokalee Workers
Tomatoland: Modern Day Slavery in Florida
Feb. 25, 2014