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E. B. Lewis at Lesley University

e b lewis - artistratorLast night I was able to see “artistrator” E. B. Lewis deliver the Evelyn M. Finnegan Children’s Literature Lecture at Lesley University. If you have a chance to see E. B. Lewis speak, you should.

Teachers should hear him speak about the broken education system and how to fix it — namely, first figure out what makes a kid excited about learning anything, then put him or her in front of it. For Little Earl, that something was art (not law, though those teachers should not have laughed at him).

e b lewis - slide

Aspiring authors and illustrators should hear him speak about good timing and perseverance…and, most importantly, doing your homework.

Librarians will be pleased to hear that the place he does his homework is the library.

Parents should listen to his words about lifting children up: scratch the surface to see what’s revealed. There’s your winning lottery ticket.

e b lewis - boysBelievers in fate should hear him speak about being in the right place at the right time for when inspiration hits — his led him straight to a Wawa.

After Lewis spoke, Lesley faculty member Susan E. Goodman — the author of The First Step: How One Girl Put Segregation on Trial, illustrated by Lewis — joined him for a Q/A. It was an inspirational, thought-provoking, up-with-the-arts event. Thank you, Lesley University, for hosting.

e b lewis - first step poster

Elissa Gershowitz About Elissa Gershowitz

Elissa Gershowitz is executive editor of The Horn Book, Inc. She holds an MA from the Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons College and a BA from Oberlin College.



  1. Thanks for this post, Elissa. I was planning on attending the lecture, but had to bow out.

  2. I was at E.B Lewis’s talk as well. Very uplifting and wonderful how he started his art work. Thanks for sharing.

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