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Public Lecture: Mathematics & Literature by Michèle Audin

February 12, 2018 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Public Lecture: Mathematics & Literature

A talk by OuLiPo Author Michèle Aduin

Monday, Feburary 12th, 2018, 5:00 pm

Location: Toy Lounge, Dey Hall

What does it mean to explore literature’s potential through imposed limits? How do mathematical tools help us to write creatively?  The experimental writing group of OuLiPo (Ouvroir de littérature potentielle, or Workshop for Potential Literature), meets once a month in Paris to investigate, practice, and create new writing techniques often based on mathematical constraints for the creation of ludic literature. Join us for a rare and exciting opportunity to hear Michèle Audin, former Professor of Mathematics, and renown OuLiPo author speak about her work. She will discuss her use of mathematical tools to write literary texts, focusing mainly on the poetic form of the sestina which was invented in the 13th century by the troubadour Arnaut Daniel.


Michèle Audin studied mathematics at the École Normale Supérieure de Sèvres in Paris, France and was a professor of mathematics for 35 years, spending most of her career at the University of Strasbourg. In 2009, Audin was elected to the French literary group OuLiPo, which seeks to create literary works using constrained writing techniques, often based on mathematical principles. Audin is the author of three major novels, a biography and a collection of short stories. Her work is based on historical facts, archival documents, and the narratives of notable figures in the history of mathematics, and specifically women.


OuLiPo was first established as an experimental literary group in 1960 by the poet, Raymond Queneau (who was previously a surrealist), and the mathematician, Francois le Lyonnais. It has been active in literary production since its inception. Some other notable members are: Georges Perec, Italo Calvino, Jacques Roubaud and in our own Triangle region, Anne Garrèta, who is faculty at Duke University.

Audin Poster

AWM will host a tea with Dr. Audin at 2:00pm on Monday, February 12th in the lounge (PH 330).


February 12, 2018
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
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