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‘Backpack’ Author Golinkin  Visits TAMIU, City Oct. 13-14 Posted: 10/05/17

‘Backpack’ Author Golinkin  Visits TAMIU, City Oct. 13-14


Lev Golinkin
Lev Golinkin  

The author of the acclaimed “A Backpack, A Bear and Eight Crates of Vodka,” Lev Golinkin, will visit Laredo Thursday and Friday, Oct. 13-14.

Golinkin is the selected author for Texas A&M International University’s (TAMIU) Common Reading Program, “Reading the Globe,” and the City of Laredo’s One City, One Book Project.  He will visit the campus Friday to meet with and share insight with students.  

On Saturday, Golinkin will appear at the Joe A. Guerra Laredo Public Library, 1120 E. Calton Road at 9:30 a.m.  His appearance at the Library is free and open to the public.

Golinkin’s “Backpack” offers a compelling story of two intertwined stories:  a Jewish refugee family fleeing persecution, and a young man seeking to reclaim a shattered past.  

Golinkin’s appearance is made possible in part by Humanities Texas.  

A graduate of Boston College, Golinkin came to the US as a child refugee from the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkov (now Kharkiv) in 1990. His op-eds and essays on the Ukraine crisis have appeared in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, and, among others and he has been interviewed by WSJ Live and HuffPost Live. “A Backpack, A Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka” is his first book.

TAMIU’s Common Reading Program is a University-wide initiative spearheaded by University College that unites students, faculty and staff, and the community around a common academically oriented intellectual activity. Since 2008, the program has allowed all first-year students to engage in an internationally focused book through their University Seminar each fall semester. 

It provides the opportunity for discourse about issues relevant to students, and raises social awareness on a local and global scale. Faculty and staff also participate in the Common Read to foster and strengthen the growth of an intellectual community in and around the University in support of the students’ academic development. The Common Reading Program is an early directed effort in the higher education experience of all TAMIU students to develop an understanding of society and culture, one of TAMIU’s Undergraduate Learning Principles.

Students also have an opportunity to apply for a competitive opportunity to travel with a group of students, often to the setting of a Reading the Globe book.  To date, student groups have traveled to: Bosnia, Cambodia, China, Chile, Ghana, India, South Korea, Poland, South Africa, and Turkey.  This year, the selected students will travel to Russia.

For additional information, contact Dr. Conchita Hickey at University College at 956.326.2134, email or visit offices in the Senator Judith Zaffirini Student Success Center, room 223. Information is also available online at