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Kevin Young

29th annual Key West Literary Seminar

—The Hungry Muse: An Exploration of Food in Literature—

January 6 - 16, 2011

Kevin Young was born 1970 in Lincoln, Nebraska, and earned a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and a master’s degree in creative writing from Brown University.

His first book, Most Way Home, was a 1993 National Poetry Series winner and received the John C. Zacharis First Book Award of Ploughsharesmagazine. His 2001 collection, To Repel Ghosts: Five Sides in B Minor, is a tribute to painter and graffiti artist Jean-Michel Basquiat and was a finalist for the James Laughlin Award of the Academy of American Poets. His 2003 Jelly Roll: A Blues was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Award. His most recent collection is Dear Darkness.

Young’s poetry and essays have appeared in leading publications includingThe New YorkerThe New York Times Book ReviewThe Paris Review, theKenyon ReviewPoetryFence, and elsewhere, and have been featured on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” He is also the editor ofGiant Steps: The New Generation of African American Writers and the 2003 Everyman pocket anthology Blues Poems.

Young’s awards and honors include fellowships from Stanford University, the Guggenheim Foundation, the MacDowell Colony, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has taught at the University of Georgia and Indiana University and is currently the Atticus Haygood Professor of English and Creative Writing at Emory University, as well as the curator of the Raymond Danowski Poetry Library. He lives in Boston and in Atlanta.

Online Resources:

The Poetry Foundation profile
Interview in Bold Type
Young on PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer
Profiled in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Kevin Young in the KWLS Audio Archives: a reading from 2008

Selected Bibliography:

The Art of Losing: Poems of Grief and Healing (editor) (Bloomsbury USA 2010)

Dear Darkness (Knopf 2008)

For the Confederate Dead (Knopf 2007)

Black Maria (Knopf 2005)

Jelly Roll (Knopf 2003)

To Repel Ghosts (Zoland 2002)

Most Way Home (Zoland 1998)

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