Bongani Ndlovu '14

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Bongani Ndlovu

Physics and Astronomy Department

Acclaimed Author Reimagines Dickinson Love Affair in New Historical Novel


March 3, 2015
By Rachel Rogol

Even if you’ve never heard his name, chances are you’re familiar with William Nicholson’s work. An award-winning screenwriter whose film credits include Shadowlands, Gladiator, Elizabeth: the Golden Age and Les Misérables, among others, Nicholson is also an acclaimed author who writes both for adults and younger readers.

His most recent project is Amherst, a historical novel that intersperses a fictional modern-day love story with the historically accurate love affair between Austin Dickinson (brother of Emily Dickinson and Amherst College Treasurer from 1873 until his death in 1895) and his mistress Mabel Loomis Todd (wife of David Todd, Class of 1875, who served the college as Instructor in Astronomy and Director of the Observatory). Both the Dickinson and Todd families were intimately involved in the life of Amherst College from its very beginning.

Nicholson's new novel recreates Austin and Mabel's scandalous affair from numerous letters between the two and cites snippets of Emily Dickinson's poems throughout. "It's in some ways my love letter to the poet Emily Dickinson, who I first encountered over forty years ago," Nicholson wrote on his blog. "Her poems shock and thrill me as much today as they did then."


This is the trolley that rides around Amherst

Summer Adventures in Amherst...and the WORLD CUP

This week has been full of adventures to some of my favorite places in the area (and some new ones that I discovered) so I thought I should blog about that! 

2013-2014 Fall Milonga

Submitted by Jordan B. Young on Sunday, 12/8/2013, at 12:30 AM

With the Cooperation of the Mount Holyoke Dance Department & the 
NeoTangoZone (a coproduction of TangoPulse and Northampton Tango)

All of these events are FREE of charge, except the Practica on Sat night which is only $5!

Saturday, Dec 7th

4:30-6:30 at Kendall Gym Studio 2 (Mt Holyoke Dance Department)

Music Workshop with Mari Black, violin, and Tilly Kimm, Piano; of Orquesta Sin Trabajo

"Take It Apart and See How It Works: Tango Music from the Inside"

Students Encounter Nature around Amherst

Submitted on Wednesday, 10/30/2013, at 9:47 AM

Life Outside of College

So this is my first blog post (YAY?!!?). I am both excited and nervous right now. Excited because I’ve never really been in the public eye before--I pray to God that I don’t make a fool out of myself--and nervous because I am hoping that you will find my post entertaining and will want to read more.

After a marathon of Game of Thrones Season 1 (I am trying to get Julia, the other blogger, to get into GoT, so please pester her about watching!!! Just kidding. But not really though……), I have finally mustered up the motivation to write my first blog post. Here goes nothing…..!

No Fear Sha-ka-spear**

Last week, my English Professor asked my friend and me to perform a scene from Henry IV. My friend was playing the part of Hal, a young prince, and I...well, I was assigned the part of a fat, low-life, alcoholic. At first I was terrified that I would get boo’d off stage and I told my Professor that if that happened, to please excuse my absences for the rest of the semester, as I would never be able to show my face in his class again.