Work to begin soon on Philip Levine Reading Room

Reading room rendering WEB
The creation of the Philip Levine Reading Room will soon begin on campus at the Henry Madden LibraryThe reading room will house Levine’s personal collection of poetry and literature, generously donated by his family to benefit Fresno State and the community.
The reading room will be located on the second floor of the Henry Madden Library, overlooking the University’s Peace Garden. We will continue to bring you updates as they develop.

Philip Levine mugEstablishing this room is a way for the University to honor Philip Levine’s contributions to Fresno State. Having a lasting, working tribute that gives back to the community embodies what Philip Levine was about.

Levine, a Pulitzer Prize winner (1995) and U.S. Poet Laureate (2011-2012), taught at Fresno State from 1958 to 1992. After retirement, he remained vitally connected to the University’s Creative Writing Program, visiting classes, attending and giving readings and teaching mini-courses. Levine died in February 2015.

“Phil Levine’s poetry celebrates the full promise of the present and dignifies the laborer,” said Saúl Jiménez-Sandoval, dean of the College of Arts and Humanities. “His poetry finds the jewels of thought, wisdom and joy hidden in the everyday. The Philip Levine Reading Room is a fitting tribute, as it’s designed as a dynamic and creative, student-centered space that promotes learning, writing and the development of thought.”

If you wish to be a part of this exciting project to honor Phil’s contributions and legacy, please contact Becky Brown at 559.278.1877 or email

Several giving opportunities are available. As a donor, your name will be included in the donor book displayed in the reading room, and your gift will make the room a reality so students, faculty, and the community can study and enjoy Levine’s life work.

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The College of Arts and Humanities provides a diverse student population with the communication skills, humanistic values and cultural awareness that form the foundation of scholarship. The college offers intellectual and artistic programs that engage students and faculty and the community in collaboration, dialog and discovery. These programs help preserve, illuminate and nourish the arts and humanities for the campus and for the wider community.

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