Author Barbara Taylor Bradford to Speak on Role of Civility in Arts and Letters

News Story: May 22, 2015

Barbara Taylor Bradford, OBE, author of the bestselling book, A Woman of Substance, will participate in a question and answer session about the role of civility in the world of arts and letters on June 25 at 6 p.m. at The Ferguson Library.

Her appearance is part of a series on Civility in America, sponsored by Sacred Heart University and The Dilenschneider Group, along with Hearst Media Group in Connecticut and The Ferguson Library.

A renowned author, Barbara has published 30 novels, all of which have been worldwide bestsellers. In 1979, her first novel, A Women of Substance, was on The New York Times bestseller list for 55 weeks and sold more than 35 million copies in 90 countries and 40 languages. It is now ranked in the top ten bestselling works of fiction of all time. Her latest novel is The Cavendon Women, published in April 2015.

Born and raised in England, she was 16 when she became a reporter on the Yorkshire Evening Post, and at 18 was made woman’s page editor of the paper. Following that she became fashion editor for a women’s magazine before becoming a columnist and feature writer for the London Evening News. She still writes for a number of leading British newspapers and magazines. Her foray into fiction proved to be a tremendous success. To date, 10 of her books have been made into television series and movies of the week starring actors such as Anthony Hopkins, Liam Neeson, and Elizabeth Hurley.

In 2007, Queen Elizabeth II awarded Barbara the Order of the British Empire (O.B.E) for her services to literature.

She is the recipient of 27 other awards for her writing achievements and philanthropy. She has also received five Honorary Doctorates of Letters.

Barbara recently received the Lizzie Award from Literacy Partners in New York for her philanthropy and the work she has done for them for the last 25 years. She has worked hard to promote literacy, one of her great passions. She believes that not being able to read is “a death sentence.” Her relationship with Literacy Partners began in 1990 and still continues today.

In 2014, she accepted an invitation from Baroness Prasher, M.P. to become ambassador of the National Literacy Trust in the UK, of which her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Cornwall is the Patron.

Public opinion polls show that in every sector of society, civility has declined, and this decline is manifested in political attacks, lack of personal decency, outrage in the media and cyber-assaults in the blogosphere.

Robert L. Dilenschneider, founder and president of The Dilenschneider Group, who conceived the idea for the series, said, “Incivility has become socially acceptable and commonplace. The lack of civility in every segment of society, from politics to academia, from the media to the blogosphere, from talk radio to the pulpit, has become a crippling epidemic that threatens the future of our country. Something must be done.”

For information about the series, call 203-351-8231, or register online at