Press Release: News Release May 2003: Internationally-renowned Andrei Codrescu to speak at State Bar of Wisconsin annual convention on Thursday:

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    May
    05
    2003

    News Release May 2003: Internationally-renowned Andrei Codrescu to speak at State Bar of Wisconsin annual convention on Thursday


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    For Immediate Release
     

    CONTACT: Christi Powers
    State Bar of Wisconsin
    (800) 444-9404, ext. 6025
    org cpowers wisbar wisbar cpowers org
    or
    Jason Westphal
    (800) 444-9404, ext.6077
    (608) 220-1258 (mobile)
    org jwestphal wisbar wisbar jwestphal org

    *

    Internationally-renowned Andrei Codrescu to speak at State Bar of Wisconsin annual convention on Thursday
    Author, poet, scholar and filmmaker provides a different perspective on the legal world

    MADISON, May 5, 2003 - He's known as a poet, humorist, author, filmmaker and social critic. And he's not your typical fare at a legal convention. But he'll be in Milwaukee at the Midwest Airlines Center on Thursday, May 8 as the keynote speaker for the State Bar of Wisconsin annual convention.

    He's Andrei Codrescu, a Romanian born scholar who emigrated to the U.S. in 1966 and has an unusual and refreshing view of American life, society, politics and law. He is a professor of English at Louisiana State University and just published another book this month "Casanova in Bohemia." A regular contributor on National Public Radio, Codrescu has also appeared on The David Letterman Show, The Charlie Rose Show, TheToday Show and on CNN as well as writing for The Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun and The New York Times. His prolific works have won him a National Endowment for the Arts award, a General Electric Foundation Poetry prize, the American Civil Liberty Union's Freedom of Speech award plus a Peabody award.

    "I think the Bar's willingness to invite a non-lawyer author to share his vision of and appreciation for the law and lawyers is quite a remarkable commitment," said Judge Bill Honrath, a Milwaukee County Circuit Court judge who was integral in bringing Codrescu to Milwaukee. "From my familiarity with his work, especially his experience with government censorship and repression, I know he places a great deal of value on the role lawyers play in sustaining a participatory democracy."

    Much of Codrescu's work has a common theme - a reverence for freedom and an appreciation of diversity. Born in Sibiu, Romania in 1946, Codrescu's childhood was mired in communism, which eventually spawned a prolific need for self expression and a probing view of American life.

    "The fact that an American is not an ethnicity of any particular kind, while being of many ethnicities, is a kind of ongoing miracle held together in large part by the poetry of the Constitution," Codrescu said. "That America has the greatest creative energy and wealth in the world is due entirely to the acceptance of our differences on the basis of that agreement," he said.

    Codrescu is the keynote Thursday morning speaker at the State Bar of Wisconsin's annual convention which runs from May 7 to 9 at the Midwest Airlines Center, Milwaukee. His presentation, "Lawyers, Poets and other Alchemists: Looking for Gold in the 21st Century," begins at 9 a.m.