Leona Godin (2019) is a writer, actor, artist and educator who is blind. She is currently working on “Seeing & Not-Seeing: A Personal and Cultural History of Blindness” with Pantheon Books. Godin received her PhD in English Literature from NYU. Her writing has appeared in such diverse publications as PLAYBOY, O Magazine and Catapult, where she writes a column called “A Blind Writer’s Notebook.” She founded Aromatica Poetica as a venue for exploring the arts and sciences of smell and taste, an online magazine not specifically for, but welcoming to, blind readers and writers.
As an actor and director, Godin wrote and produced two theatrical productions in “New York City: The Star of Happiness,” which is based on Helen Keller’s time performing on vaudeville, and “The Spectator & the Blind Man,” set in 18th century France, which tells the history of the invention of Braille. Godin has given talks and lectures on art, accessibility, technology and blindness in venues from the American Printing House for the Blind in Louisville to NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering.
As a Logan Nonfiction Program fellow, Leona will work on her book, “Seeing & Not-Seeing: A Personal and Cultural History of Blindness,” which weaves the story of her own vision loss into a larger inquiry of blindness and vision, twin concepts that have been central to humanity’s understanding of itself and the world from the days of Homer onward.