LPB showcases Louisiana literature around Ken Burns’ documentary on Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway is considered one of the greatest American writers – an iconic literary figure with an unparalleled body of artistic work and a complicated emotional legacy. In Hemingway, a new documentary series directed by award-winning filmmakers Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, viewers will get an intimate picture of the writer…and the man behind the myth. Louisiana Public Broadcasting (LPB) airs the three-part, six-hour documentary series on three consecutive nights, April 5 – 7 from 7:00 – 9:00 PM. Each episode is followed by Louisiana themed documentaries spotlighting authors who were either born or inspired by our state.

With Hemingway, Burns and Novick explore the painstaking process through which Hemingway created some of the most important works of American literature in the 20th century, while also penetrating the myth of Hemingway as the ultimate “man’s man.” What is revealed is a deeply troubled and tragic figure. The film also explores his limitations and biases as an artist.

“The documentary attempts to go beyond prevailing assumptions about Ernest Hemingway and his writing,” said director Ken Burns. “At the same time, we are unsparing in our inquiry into less well-known aspects of his character and writing. Our intent is to offer viewers an honest portrayal of a complex and conflicted writer who left an indelible mark on literature.”

“Our state has a wealth of creative and influential writers and artists,” says Jason Viso, Director of Programming at LPB. “When presented with an opportunity to amplify Louisiana stories around a Burns/Novick documentary on writer Ernest Hemingway, it was an easy decision.”

The LPB Louisiana Spotlight documentaries scheduled to air are:

  • KATE CHOPIN: A RE-AWAKENING (Monday, April 4 at 9pm) – Kate Chopin set her stories in New Orleans and in the bayous and backwaters of Louisiana – a lush world that awakened a longing for freedom.
  • ERNEST J. GAINES: LOUISIANA STORIES (Monday, April 4 at 9:30pm) – A look at the author’s life and career as told by his family – and Gaines himself.
  • JOHN KENNEDY TOOLE: THE OMEGA POINT (Tuesday, April 6 at 9pm) – The tragic story of the author of “A Confederacy of Dunces” who took his own life before his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel was published.
  • WALKER PERCY: A DOCUMENTARY FILM (Wednesday, April 7 at 9pm) – The life and work of the writer and National Book Award Winner.

On the night of the broadcast premiere, Hemingway will be available for general streaming at lpb.org as well as via LPB Passport , an extended member benefit, as part of the full collection of Ken Burns films.

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