Associated Initiatives

The Letters of Samuel Beckett

The Letters of Samuel Beckett, which has been based in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Emory University since 1990, is preparing the authorized scholarly edition of Samuel Beckett's letters. The edition will be published by Cambridge University Press in four volumes, a selection from over 15,000 letters that are held in archives and private collections world-wide. At Emory, the project has trained several generations of young scholars in its interdisciplinary humanities laboratory.

The Richard Ellmann Lectures in Modern Literature

 Richard Ellmann and Seamus Heaney In 1987, the Ellmann lectures were established in memory of renowned Yeats, Joyce and Wilde scholar Richard Ellmann who served Emory as the first Robert W. Woodruff Professor from 1980-87. Poet and Nobel Prize winner, Seamus Heaney, inaugurated the series and donated the manuscripts of his lectures to the library. Past lecturers include Helen Vendler, Henry Louis Gates, A.S. Byatt, David Lodge, Salman Rushdie, Mario Vargas Llosa, Umberto Eco, Margaret Atwood and Paul Simon.

In November 2017, the Ellmann lecturer is award-winning Irish author, Colm Tóibín.  Schedule and ticket information available at

The W. B. Yeats Foundation

The W. B. Yeats Foundation, headed by Professor James Flannery, exists in order to promote a greater understanding and appreciation of Irish culture. From 1989 to 1993, with the help of the Coca-Cola Company, the Yeats Foundation sponsored the Yeats International Theater Festival at the Abbey Theatre, the National Theatre of Ireland. Over the past fifteen years it has also sponsored a wide range of lectures, concerts, symposia and exhibitions for the benefit of the Emory and greater Atlanta community.  An annual highlight at Emory is the Atlanta Celtic Christmas concert which celebrates the Christmas season through the poetry, music, dance, songs and stories of Ireland North and South and their connections with similar traditions in the American South.