Farnham Writers’ Center Director Paula Harrington will be the guest speaker May 14 at “The Trouble Begins at Eight,” the annual spring series at the Center for Mark Twain Studies at Elmira College. Her talk, “The French Face of Twain,” will consider Twain’s lifelong dislike of the French and its role in his creation, by opposition, of a new kind of American identity in the later 19th century.

Harrington will also discuss her research as a 2013 Fulbright Scholar in France, where she gave guest lectures on Twain’s attitudes about the French and explored French knowledge of his work.

This summer Harrington will return to Elmira for two weeks as a Quarry Farm Research Fellow, working with her French colleague Ronald Jenn, professor at the University of Lille, on a book for the University of Missouri Press.

Over spring break Harrington traveled to the Mark Twain Papers and Project at the University of California, Berkeley, to research Twain’s letters and journals. An article she coauthored with Ronald Jenn, “Uncovering the French: On the Roots of Uses of Twain’s Antipathy,” has been accepted for publication by the Mark Twain Annual.