“Most of us see the layers of space, but Kuusisto, who has been legally blind since birth, hears them,” wrote a Publisher’s Weekly reviewer of “Eavesdropping” by Stephen Kuusisto ’78. An author, professor, speaker, blogger, poet and disability advocate, Kuusisto has published a new book, “Do Not Interrupt: A Playful Take on the Art of Conversation” (Sterling Publishing, June, 2010).
Described by the publisher as an “erudite and playful primer on the art of conversation,” Kuusisto uses a wide range of personal anecdotes, classical texts and an engaging style to illustrate his points in seven short chapters. “Do Not Interrupt,” according to Sterling Publishing, means to be a compelling argument for the joys of “being connected,” and skillfully shows how to achieve this bond in everyday exchanges.
Recognized by the New York Times as “a powerful writer with a musical ear for language and a gift for emotional candor,” Kuusisto has made numerous appearances on programs including “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” “National Public Radio,” “Dateline NBC” and the BBC.
Kuusisto earned a B.A. in English with Honors from Hobart College and went on to graduate from the Writer’s Workshop at the University of Iowa. He is also a Fulbright Scholar. He currently holds a dual faculty appointment at the University of Iowa in the English Department, where he teaches courses in creative nonfiction, and as a public humanities scholar in the university’s Carver Institute for Macular Degeneration.
The author of several books of poetry and nonfiction, he is also a contributing editor to Seneca Review. His poems have appeared in The New York Times Magazine; Harper’s, Poetry and Partisan Review. Reviews of “Eavesdropping: A Memoir,” published in 2006, have trumpeted Kuusisto’s writing ability.
Through Kaleidoscope Connections LLC, a company co-founded by him and his wife Connie, Kuusisto speaks widely on diversity, disability, education and public policy. “Do Not Interrupt” is available at The College Store.