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Nov. 21, 2006
Also Contact: Sheila Eppolito, 978-934-2156 or Sheila_Eppolito@uml.edu
LOWELL -- In 1676, Mary Rowlandson, wife of a Puritan minister from Lancaster, was captured by American Indians, held for months, and finally released for 20 pounds silver. Rowlandson was among two dozen captives following a bloody battle in King Philip’s War that killed 20 and destroyed the town of Lancaster.
Following her release, Rowlandson wrote an account of her ordeal, resulting in the country’s first best seller and the birth of the Indian captivity narrative genre. She never wrote another book.
Today, Rowlandson’s torment is better understood following the release of “The Dreams of Mary Rowlandson,” a book of poetry by UMass Lowell English Prof. Hilary Holladay of Lowell. Holladay excerpts pieces from Rowlandson’s work in a cycle of 30 poetic dream sequences.
Holladay directs UMass Lowell’s Jack and Stella Kerouac Center for American Studies. “The Dreams of Mary Rowlandson” is available from Loom Press, www.loompress.com.
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