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Breast Cancer Fund-Raiser Scheduled

Distinguished Professor James S. Olson

A few women from the Tall Pines Quilt Guild are joining forces with university and community organizations and one unusually talented man on Oct. 29 to raise funds for breast cancer detection and prevention.

James S. Olson, distinguished professor of history at Sam Houston State University and a nominee for the 2002 Pulitzer Prize in History, will speak about his acclaimed book, "Bathsheba's Breast: Women, Cancer & History," at two book signing events: Lowman Student Center Theater from noon-2 p.m., and Walker Education Center from 6-9 p.m. Olson will speak at 12:15 p.m. and 7:15 p.m., respectively.

In support of the breast cancer project, the Huntsville Cooperative of Working Artists will sponsor a reception at the Walker Education Center. The HCWA's 2002 Art Exhibit will hang at the Center from October 23 to December 7.

Proceeds from book sales and donations will be used to educate Walker County women about the vital role of mammography in the detection and treatment of breast cancer and will pay for mammograms for anyone who cannot afford this important preventive measure.

Olson's book contains essays on women throughout history who have confronted breast cancer. Its title was taken from an incident in 1967, when an Italian surgeon stopped in front of the Rembrandt painting "Bathsheba at Her Bath," and noticed an asymmetry in the model's left breast. After some research, the surgeon determined that the model had died after a long illness, and more than 300 years after the scene was painted, made the diagnosis that the cause of her death was breast cancer.

"Bathsheba's Breast" tells the story of a handful of the estimated 25 million women who have died throughout history from this mysterious and deadly affliction, with great suffering and at a great loss in productive lives. One such person was Abigail "Nabby" Adams, daughter of the second president of the United States and her now-famous mother, Abigail Adams, an early opponent of slavery and advocate of women's rights.

Up to $50,000 in donations and book sales will be matched by the Robert A. Josey Fund. Participating organizations include the Tall Pines Quilt Guild, Huntsville Memorial Hospital, Sam Houston State University Alumni Association and other SHSU offices.

Grettle Payne, coordinator for the Oct. 29 events, said that Olson's book may be purchased at the book signing or may be reserved thru Oct. 21 by sending $30 to the Tall Pines Quilt Guild; PO Box 7272; Huntsville, TX 77342-7272; with checks payable to the Walker County Mammogram Fund. Books will be mailed for an additional $4.

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SHSU Media Contact: Frank Krystyniak
Sept. 30, 2002
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