April 2011 Archives

MFA Alums Win Minnesota Book Award, McKnights

Cover image of Find the GirlLightsey Darst (MFA 2003) received the Minnesota Book Award for poetry for her debut collection Find the Girl (Coffee House Press, 2010). The awards were announced April 16. . . . Three out of four 2011 McKnight Artist Fellowships for Writers went to MFA alumni: John Colburn, Ethan Rutherford, and Dominic Saucedo, who will each receive $25,000. . . . In other Creative Writing Program news, MFA candidate Colleen Coyne was awarded this year's Academy of American Poets James Wright Prize for Poetry. The reader was Garrison Keillor. She will receive $100 from the Academy and possible publication in the academy anthology. BA alum Jessica Mayer and current major Madeline Summers won honorable mentions. MFA candidates Andrea Uptmor and Wahida Omar received 2011 Marcella DeBourg Fellowships. These $1000 awards are given annually to graduate students whose writing gives "creative expression to women's lives." MFA candidates Sarah Fox and Chris Keimig were awarded residencies at the Anderson Center in Red Wing, MN, for July 2011. Congratulations to all!

Weaver Dissertation Defense

PhD candidate Becky Weaver will be defending her dissertation, "The Urgency of Community: The Suturing of Poetic Ideology During the Early Years of the Loft and the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics," on April 25, at 2:45 pm, in Lind Hall 216. All are welcome to the public portion of the defense.

1st Michael Dennis Browne Fellowship Recipient

Image of Alex GrantSecond year MFA candidate Alex Grant has been named as the first recipient of the Michael Dennis Browne Fellowship, created in honor of the long-time English professor who retired last spring. The summer Fellowship is to be awarded annually by faculty consensus to a poetry student in the first or second year of the Creative Writing Program, based on the progress the student is making in the Program and the achievement and promise of the work. There is no submission process. The Creative Writing Faculty noted in the announcement that Grant is "setting a bold standard, seriously pursuing novelties in voice and narrative matter, using a language that extends certain literary traditions while at the same time laying down hot new tracks. His poetry is ripe, rich and ambitious." Grant is also a musician. He is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University where he majored in Recording Industry Production and Technology. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Scrambler, Forklift OH, and Gently Read Lit. He grew up in Carthage, Tennessee. Congratulations!

English in the News

Image of Lucille BrodersonAlumna Lucille Broderson (BA 1937) is interviewed, along with her long-time teacher and editor Professor Emeritus Michael Dennis Browne, in CLA's REACH magazine about her second collection of poetry, You're Wearing a Blue Shirt the Color of the Sky: Selected Poems (Nodin). REACH also spotlights reviews of books by alums Matt Burgess and Elizabeth Bourque Johnson. . . . MFA alumnus Burgess, author of the acclaimed debut novel Dogfight, a Love Story, was interviewed this month in the Star Tribune, for the "My Minnesota" feature. . . . Distinguished McKnight University Professor John Watkins was quoted in a Star Tribune article about the American fascination with British royalty. Watkins is also interviewed on the University home page this week. . . . Finally Edelstein-Keller Professor in Creative Writing Charles Baxter's latest story collection Gryphon is reviewed by Claire Messud in the April 28 New York Review of Books.

English Major Wins CLA Birkelo Scholarship

English and Journalism double major Carrie Krueger has won a 2011-12 Selmer Birkelo Scholarship, given to 15 College of Liberal Arts students annually. The Birkelo Scholarship is worth up to $4000 according to need. The scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic merit, with particular attention paid to depth of study in the major, general breadth of coursework, and clarity of academic purpose. Congratulations, Carrie!

Joan Didion Lecture Canceled

The Department of English regrets to announce that Joan Didion's lecture scheduled for April 13, 2011, has been canceled, due to health concerns. Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Natasha Trethewey will give the spring 2011 Esther Freier Endowed Lecture in Literature April 27, 2011, at 7:30 pm in Coffman Union Theater.


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