Dr. Michael Olin-Hitt Presents Wolf Lecture

February 11, 2013

ALLIANCE, Ohio — Dr. Michael Olin-Hitt, author and professor of English at the University of Mount Union, presented the Wolf Lecture, “Story and Identity: A Writer’s Perspective,” on Thursday.

In honor of his topic, Olin-Hitt opened his lecture by telling a story.

“Stories come from the cliffs of human perception,” he said. “They come from deep caverns of human conscience.”

Olin-Hitt then shared that stories create and establish an identity and larger stories, like Jesus’ and many others, can transform an identity through psychological and spiritual development.

“We are our stories,” he stated. “Fill your bags with stories, and choose them well.”

In addition, Olin-Hitt explained two types of storytelling, popular and literary.  He illustrated that popular storytelling produces high emotion that sometimes doesn’t last, and that literary storytelling can last on the bookshelf forever, leaving readers impacted in some way.

For his recently published novel, The Homegoing, a novel created around his grandmother and mother, Olin-Hitt discussed how he wanted to combine the popular mystery genre with literary standards.

“It’s a story about hunting down stories,” he described.

Olin-Hitt concluded his lecture by reading the first chapter in The Homegoing.

Olin-Hitt wrote his first story about monsters at age six and continued writing for a literary journal at Otterbein University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in English. He also earned a Master of Arts degree in English and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in English from The Ohio State University.

Olin-Hitt’s other publications include The Word of God Upon My Lips and A Fish Made of Water, as well as other short stories.

The John and Eleanor Mincks Wolf Lecture in Music Education and English was established with gifts in 1999 and 2009 to honor the memory of John ’47 and Eleanor (Mincks) Wolf. John was a teacher of music for 30 years in the Strongsville schools and Eleanor was a teacher of English and Latin in Richfield and Highland school districts. Distributions from the endowed fund are used to bring professionals in the disciplines of music education or English to campus.

Wolf Lecture 2013

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