Public Poetry Project honoree selected for MacArthur Fellowship

September 19, 2014

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Pennsylvania Center for the Book is pleased to announce that one of its 2006 selections for the Public Poetry Project, Terrance Hayes of Pittsburgh, has been awarded one of this year's MacArthur Fellowships. Hayes, a professor of writing in the Department of English at the University of Pittsburgh, is a poet who reflects on race, gender and family. The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people and effective institutions committed to building a more just, verdant and peaceful world.

William S. Brockman, Penn State’s Paterno Family Librarian for Literature, noted, “Hayes’s selection as a MacArthur Fellow confirms the increasing strength of the Public Poetry Project’s backlist of poets and of the continuing importance of the program, fast becoming one of Penn State’s Libraries' most prominent outreach activities.

In 2006 when the jury selected Hayes’s poem “Gun/Women/Sons” they said, “The poem's excavations of origin, set against the backdrop of a troubled America, are strikingly memorable in their rawness, their energy, their push to construct a habitable identity.” Now in its 14th year, the Public Poetry Project focuses on poets with a connection to Pennsylvania and displays the poetry in public places to make it a part of the daily lives of a greater number of people. Since the project began in 2000, 65 poems have been printed and placed in public places throughout Pennsylvania.

The project, under the direction of the Pennsylvania Center for the Book, is supported by the Paterno Family Librarian for Literature, William S. Brockman; the University Libraries; the Department of English in the College of the Liberal Arts; and the Pennsylvania Center for the Book, an affiliate of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.

For more information, call Public Relations and Marketing at 814-863-4240.

Last Updated September 22, 2014