News Release

News and Public Information Office
Glos Center
Miami University
Oxford, Ohio 45056
(513) 529-7592
(513) 529-1950 fax
newsinfo@miamioh.edu

NOBEL LAUREATE RIGOBERTA MENCHU TUM AT MIAMI

02/12/1997

OXFORD, Ohio -- A two-day visit to Miami University by Rigoberta

Menchú Tum, 1992 Nobel Peace Prize winner, will be highlighted by a free

public lecture at 8 p.m. Monday, March 3, at Hall Auditorium.

Menchú Tum, who will be awarded an honorary degree by Miami, also

will be the keynote speaker at the annual Women of Color luncheon at 11 a.m.

Tuesday, March 4, at the Shriver Center multi-purpose room. Luncheon tickets

are $8 ($5 for Miami students) and are being sold by Miami Women's Center,

529-1510.

Her 1983 book, I, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, An Indian Woman in

Guatemala, and her 15-year campaign for a peaceful end to the Guatemalan

civil war brought Menchú Tum worldwide attention. She attended several

of the accord signings marking that 36-year war's end in late 1996.

Of Mayan-Quiche descent, she grew up in the Guatemalan countryside,

working as a child laborer and domestic worker. She fled to Mexico in 1980

after Guatemalan armed forces tortured and killed her activist parents and a

brother.

Some 100,000 people were killed during that civil war, an estimated 40,000

"disappeared," and about one million were driven from their homes or into

exile.

At 21 years old, the self-educated Menchú began working for labor

and human rights groups as well as in the defense of victims of government

repression around the world.

The youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, she also was nominated by

the United Nations as Goodwill Ambassador for the International Decade of

Indigenous Peoples in 1993 and in 1996 received France's Legion of Honor

award.

Menchú Tum currently presides over the Indigenous Initiative for

Peace and the Rigoberta Menchú Tum Foundation.

Her visit is part of the university's Latin American Celebration 1996-97.

It is sponsored by Western College Alumnae Association, the office of the

provost, Grayson-Kirk Distinguished Lecture Series of the international studies

program, Latin American studies program, women's studies, honors program, and

the Women of Color program.

She will also give a free public speech sponsored by the World Affairs

Council of Greater Cincinnati at the Aronoff Center for the Arts at 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 4.

Tickets are needed for the free March 3 Hall Auditorium lecture. They

will be available starting at 6 p.m. that day at the auditorium. For more

information, call (513) 529-7592.

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