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TEOC Scholar Nichole Lariscy Speaks on the Power of Storytelling

by Jesse Chambers,

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- An assistant professor of English at The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) who stages innovative community theatre projects will deliver the next presentation in The Edge of Chaos Scholars lecture series, to be held in The Edge of Chaos events venue on campus on Friday at 1:30 p.m. 

Nichole Lariscy will speak on the topic, "Staging Stories that Heal: Performing the Palliative Power of Storytelling," according to a news release from the venue. 

Lariscy teaches composition and literature courses, often as part of the UAB Global Community Leadership Honors Program, the release states

Many of Lariscy's courses involve service-learning in which students gather life stories from -- and create stories with -- the members of a community. The classes then turn these stories into plays that are produced in that community. 

For example, Lariscy and her students gathered stories and staged a production with the patients at the South Highland Adult Day Center in 2013. 

The play, "A Will Not His Own," was co-written by Lariscy and Rachel King-Barr and told the fictional story of Will, a man struggling with dementia. 

"Everyone needs to think carefully of their elders and what steps they're going to take," Lariscy told UAB News.

The Edge of Chaos announced the creation of its Scholars Program in June and invited 26 UAB faculty members from a wide variety of disciplines to participate and offer lectures during the academic year. 

"The only restriction placed on the scholars... is that the lecture not be boring," Edge of Chaos director David Hooks said in September.

The aim of the program is to bring together some of the finest minds at UAB to attack what the venue's web site calls the "wicked problems" that "plague communities" and are difficult to solve. 

The lecture is free and open to the public. 

The Edge of Chaos -- funded by the UAB School of Public Health -- is located on the fourth floor of Lister Hill Library.  

For more information, including a complete events calendar, go to