Gregory Pardlo wins 2015 Pulitzer for Digest
Brooklyn, NY (April 22, 2015)—Cave Canem Foundation, North America’s premier home for black poetry, congratulates Cave Canem fellow Gregory Pardlo, recipient of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his collection Digest, published by Four Way Books. This year’s jury described his book as “clear‐voiced poems that bring readers the news from 21st Century America, rich with thought,
ideas and histories public and private.” Pardlo will receive a monetary prize of $10,000, and will be honored alongside other 2015 winners at a luncheon on Columbia University’s campus.
Pardlo’s first book, Totem, received the American Poetry Review/Honickman Prize in 2007. His poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Nation, Ploughshares, Tin House, as well as such anthologies as Angles ofAscent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry and two editions of Best American Poetry. He is the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship and a fellowship for translation from the National Endowment for the Arts. An associate editor of Callaloo, he currently is a teaching fellow in Undergraduate Writing at Columbia University and is writing his dissertation for the PhD in English at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. He is the second Cave Canem fellow to win the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, following Tracy K. Smith, whose collection, Life on Mars, was honored in 2012.
Founded in 1996 by poets Toi Derricotte and Cornelius Eady to remedy the under‐representation and isolation of African American poets in the literary landscape, Cave Canem is a home for the many voices of African American poetry and is committed to cultivating the artistic and professional growth of African American poets. Called ʺthe major watering hole and air pocket for black poetryʺ by 2011 National Book Award winner Nikky Finney, Cave Canem has grown from an initial gathering of 26 poets to become an influential movement with a renowned faculty and a high achieving national fellowship of 400. Programs include a week‐long writing retreat, first‐ and second‐book prizes with prestigious presses, Legacy Conversations with pre‐eminent black poets and scholars, Poets on Craft talks, a lectures series, community‐based writing workshops, publications and national readings. Such pre‐eminent poets as Elizabeth Alexander, Terrance Hayes and Natasha Trethewey number among the organization’s faculty and judges. To date, the organization has published Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade (University of Michigan Press, 2006); The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South (University of Georgia Press, 2007); and two anthologies from Willow Books, Cave Canem Anthology XII: Poems 2008‐2009 (2012) and Cave Canem Anthology XIII: Poems 2010‐2011 (2015).