Dig Deeper: Donika Kelly
By Julia Wagner
Villanova University’s 2023 Literary Festival will be featuring poet Donika Kelly, author of The Renunciations (Graywolf) and Bestiary (Graywolf), for a reading and talk on Thursday, March 30, at 7 p.m. in Falvey Library’s Speakers’ Corner. Kelly was born in Los Angeles, Calif., and earned an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin and a PhD in English from Vanderbilt University. She currently resides in Iowa City with her wife.
The Renunciations is a winner of the Anisfield-Wolf book award in poetry, and Bestiary is a winner of the 2015 Cave Canem Poetry Prize, the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award for Poetry, and the Kate Tufts Discovery Award. Kelly’s poems have been published in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and The Paris Review. She is a Cave Canem graduate fellow and member of the collective Poets at the End of the World. She has also received a Lannan Residency Fellowship and a summer workshop fellowship from the Fine Arts Work Center. Her work has been a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Publishing Triangle Awards, the Lambda Literary Awards, and longlisted for the National Book Award.
This ACS-approved event—co-sponsored by the English Department, the Creative Writing Program, the Honors Program, Africana Studies, Global Interdisciplinary Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, the Center for Irish Studies, and Falvey Library—is free and open to the public.
Dig deeper and explore the links below for more on Kelly’s work:
- Kelly’s official website
- Kelly’s Twitter
- The Renunciations (2021)
- Bestiary (2016)
- More Poems by Kelly (Poetry Foundation)
- Self-Portrait With Father (New York Times)
- From the Catalogue of Cruelty (The New Yorker)
- Sixteen Center (The New Yorker)
- Calling: Marfa (The Atlantic)
- An Interview with Donika Kelly (West Branch)
Julia Wagner ‘26 CLAS is a Communication major from New Hampshire (Go Patriots!). She works as a Communication & Marketing Assistant at Falvey Library.
“I am personally so excited that The Renunciations is part of my Moderns curriculum, and I can’t wait to hear Kelly speak!”
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