Acclaimed poet Terrance Hayes is the distinguished guest for the College of Arts & Sciences Institute for the Humanities’ second annual Writer-in-Residence the week of Feb. 9-13 at Mississippi State University. Hayes will give a poetry reading Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. in McCool Hall’s Taylor Auditorium. The reading is open to the public.
During his visit, Hayes will meet with a creative writing class, and participate in an informal discussion session with the African American Studies Program. He will also hold office hours during his stay to work with students on their creative writing.
Hayes is the author of five books of poetry, including “Lighthead,” winner of the 2010 National Book Award and finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. His other books are “Wind in a Box”; “Hip Logic,” winner of the National Poetry Series; “Muscular Music,” winner of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award; and “How to Be Drawn,” forthcoming this year.
Hayes’ awards and accomplishments include the prestigious MacArthur Fellowship, a Whiting Writers Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a United States Artists Zell Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellowship. His poems have twice been selected for the Pushcart Prize anthology and have appeared in seven editions of “The Best American Poetry.”
The MacArthur Foundation notes that Hayes “is a poet who reflects on race, gender and family in works marked by formal dexterity and a reverence for history and the artistry of crafting verse. Employing an almost improvisational approach to writing, Hayes conjoins fluid, often humorous wordplay with references to popular culture both past and present in his subversion of canonical poetic forms.” (macfound.org/fellows/915/)
Department of English Associate Professor and Director of the Creative Writing Program Catherine Pierce believes Hayes is one of the most influential poets of this time. “Terrance Hayes is one of the most innovative, engaging and critically acclaimed poets writing today,” says Pierce. “His sharp, formally inventive, sometimes funny, always powerful poems touch on everything from family to race to pop culture to history, and hearing him read his work is a thrill. It’s a tremendous honor for Mississippi State to welcome him as our 2015 Writer-in-Residence.”
Dr. William Anthony Hay, professor of history and director of the Institute for the Humanities, discusses the importance of programs such as the Writer-in-Residence, which give students an opportunity to learn from leading figures in their field.
“With its second year, the Writer-in-Residence program has provided a tremendous benefit to Mississippi State,” says Hay. “Besides bringing to campus noted authors who work with our students and faculty, public events reach out to the wider campus. It’s another way of highlighting Mississippi State’s engagement with the humanities.”
Currently Hayes is a professor at the University of Pittsburgh, where he resides with his wife and children.
For more information about Hayes’ campus visit, contact Hay at email@example.com or College of Arts & Sciences Director of Communication Karyn Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org or 662-325-7952.
You can help your community
Quality, in-depth journalism is essential to a healthy community. The Dispatch brings you the most complete reporting and insightful commentary in the Golden Triangle, but we need your help to continue our efforts. Please consider subscribing to our website for only $2.30 per week to help support local journalism and our community.