Kevin Young is the director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture and poetry editor of the New Yorker, where he hosts the poetry podcast. He was previously the director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.
He is the author of thirteen books of poetry and prose. His newest book of poetry, Stones, was one of Library Journal’s top ten poetry titles of 2021 and was shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. His new children’s book is Emile and the Field, illustrated by Chioma Ebinama. Brown was featured on the Daily Show with Trevor Noah; Blue Laws: Selected & Uncollected Poems 1995- 2015 was longlisted for the National Book Award; and Book of Hours was a finalist for the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and winner of the Lenore Marshall Prize for Poetry from the Academy of American Poets. His collection Jelly Roll: a blues was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.
Young’s second nonfiction book, Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News, won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Nonfiction; was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award; was longlisted for the National Book Award; and was named a New York Times Notable Book, a New York Times Book Review “Editors’ Choice” selection, and a “Best Book of 2017” by NPR, the Los Angeles Times, Dallas Morning News, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Smithsonian, Vogue, Nylon, BuzzFeed, Electric Literature, and the Atlantic.
Young is the editor of nine other collections, including the anthology African American Poetry 1770–2020: 250 Years of Struggle & Song. He is series editor and wrote the introduction and forward for Unsung: Unheralded Narratives of American Slavery & Abolition.
He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and was named a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2020. In 2021 he was voted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters and was elected as a fellow of the Society of American Historians.