Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thompson-Cannino Talks about ‘Picking Cotton’ April 8

College student Jennifer Thompson was raped at knifepoint in 1984 by a man who broke into her Burlington apartment while she slept. Her identification of Ronald Cotton as her attacker led to his conviction.

Cotton maintained his innocence and after more than a decade in Raleigh’s Central Prison was exonerated by a DNA test. When Cotton met Thompson-Cannino two years later they began an unlikely friendship. With Erin Torneo, they tell their story
in the New York Times Bestseller “Picking Cotton: Our Memoir of Injustice and Redemption.”

Thompson-Cannino will give a free, public talk and sign copies of the book from 4-6 p.m. Thursday, April 8, in the UNCG Alumni House, Virginia Dare Room. The event is sponsored by the Department of Sociology and Friends of the UNCG Libraries.

The DNA test that exonerated Cotton implicated someone else in the DNA databank, Bobby Poole. Poole actually had been in Central Prison at the same time as Cotton and had told people that he raped Thompson. Poole was convicted of the crime.

In addition to demonstrating the value of DNA testing, the case raises questions about the reliability of eyewitness testimony. Thompson-Cannino says she studied her attacker during the crime in hopes of identifying him later, but she mistakenly chose Cotton out of a photo array and a lineup.

The story has been covered by a number of programs, including:
• 60 Minutes Part I and Part II
• The Today Show
• The Diane Rehm Show
• All Things Considered
Originally published in 2009, “Picking Cotton” is now available in paperback and has been chosen as the 2010 freshman read at UNC Chapel Hill.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Fred Chappell Fiction Reading on March 18

The MFA Writing Program at UNC Greensboro, The Greensboro Review, and The UNCG Center for Creative Writing in the Arts will host a fiction reading by Fred Chappell on Thursday, March 18th at 7 PM in the UNCG Faculty Center on College Avenue. The reading will celebrate the release of Chappell’s latest book, Ancestors and Others. It is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception and book signing.

Fred Chappell is the author of more than twenty books of poetry and fiction. He has received many major prizes, including the Bollingen Prize in Poetry from Yale University and the Award in Literature from the National Institute of Arts and Letters.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Library Express’ Streamlines Research for Students, Faculty

For decades the research and academic libraries across the UNC system have leveraged their collections and those of other research libraries in the region to reduce costs and make the greatest range of materials available to faculty and students.

Now, with one easy system on the web, patrons can search the library catalog of all 17 institutions in the system and have the materials they need delivered in days. UNC Library Express makes library materials across the state easy to find and quick to obtain.

Students, faculty and staff at UNCG can search available resources across the system through UNC Library Express by starting at and following the library catalog links. Books and other item are delivered by UPS Ground service, usually within three days of the request. The end result: UNC Library Express increases the number and variety of books and other resources available to all members of the UNC system community, whether they are teaching or learning on campus or through distance education.

UNC Library Express supports the ongoing UNC Tomorrow initiative, which calls for addressing the UNC community’s needs from a system-wide perspective, maximizing resources and efficiency, and avoiding unnecessary duplication. It should also facilitate improvement of public education, economic transformation, health, environment and outreach. By increasing statewide access to critical education and research materials, UNC Library Express also meets several of the key goals laid out in the 2006 President’s Advisory Committee on Efficiency and Effectiveness (PACE) report.