Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying Revisited at March 28th Conference

NEW YORK, March 7, 2008 The Friends of Columbia Libraries is pleased to co-host a conference on Friday, March 28, 2008. The event, “Fear of Flying: Can a Feminist Classic Be a Classic?” will begin at 2:00 p.m. in the Social Hall at Union Theological Seminary, located at 3041 Broadway at 121st Street, and is free and open to the public.

The conference explores the legacy of Barnard and Columbia alum Erica Jong’s groundbreaking first novel Fear of Flying. An award-winning writer who has been integral in the creation of the contemporary feminine literature genre, Erica Jong is the author of eight novels, several of which have been worldwide bestsellers. Panelists Susan Rubin Suleiman, Shelley Fisher Fishkin, Aoibheann Sweeney, Min Jin Lee, Nancy K. Miller, Rebecca Traister, and Jong herself will engage in a discussion on the impact that Fear of Flying has had on generations of feminist writers.

Erica Jong's best known work, Fear of Flying, has sold more than 18 million copies and been translated into 30 languages. In 1998, Jong was honored with the United Nations Award for Excellence in Literature. She has received Poetry magazine's Bess Hokin Prize and the Deauville Award for Literary Excellence in France. In Italy, she was given the Sigmund Freud Award for Literature in 1975.

Columbia’s Rare Book & Manuscript Library acquired a large collection of manuscripts from Jong in 2007. The collection includes thousands of manuscript pages and drafts from her novels along with shorter works that document the author’s process of composition and revision. To read more about the collection, visit

A reception will follow the program. For more information regarding this event, or to attend, please respond to To view a listing of events, visit This event is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Columbia Libraries, the Institute for Research on Women and Gender, and the Barnard Center for Research on Women.

The Friends of the Columbia Libraries aim to cultivate an informed interest in and support for the Columbia Libraries. The Friends foster the growth and improvement of the Libraries through financial and in-kind gifts and provide opportunities for creating, collecting, and preserving library materials. The Friends also promote the visibility of the Libraries through sponsorship of educational and social events.

Columbia University Libraries is one of the top ten academic library systems in the nation, with 10 million volumes, over 100,000 serials, as well as extensive collections of electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, and other nonprint formats. The collections and services are organized into 25 libraries, supporting specific academic or professional disciplines. Columbia Libraries employs more than 400 professional and support staff to assist faculty, students, and researchers in their academic endeavors. The Libraries’ website at is a gateway to its print and electronic collections and to its services.

03/07/08 LMK