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University Relations

p (785) 864-3256
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Feb. 22, 2006
Contact: Lori Kesinger, Audio-Reader, (785) 864-4625; or Janet Campbell, (785) 864-4603.

KU’s Audio-Reader provides audio book for Topeka’s ‘Big Read’ community events

LAWRENCE — As part of Topeka’s “Big Read” community-wide reading of Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, the University of Kansas’ Audio-Reader, a radio reading service, has prepared an audio version of the book for participants who are blind or visually impaired.

The Big Read, a national initiative in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Midwest, encourages reading by asking communities to come together to read and discuss one book. A series of related events including book discussions, lectures and films will take place during February and March, culminating with “The Big Read Book Discussion” on March 15 at the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site in Topeka.

KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway, one of the nation’s foremost scholars on Hurston, gave a presentation Feb. 18 as part of The Big Read.

To request an audio copy of Their Eyes Were Watching God or to find out more about The Big Read and upcoming events, call the Topeka and Shawnee County Library at (785) 840-4486 or visit

The audio version of Their Eyes Were Watching God was recorded by Audio-Reader volunteer Marilyn Bradt and aired on Audio-Reader in December. Audio-Reader has also shared a variety of book recordings with the Kansas Talking Books program, KU Continuing Education symposiums and “If All of Lawrence Read the Same Book” events. For more information about Audio-Reader, call (785) 864-4600 or 1-800-772-8898 or visit the organization’s Web site at


The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus. | (785) 864-3256 | 1314 Jayhawk Blvd., Lawrence, KS 66045