English professors are Bogliasco Fellows this spring

English professors are Bogliasco Fellows this spring

James Longenbach (University photo / J. Adam Fenster)

Joanna Scott (University photo / J. Adam Fenster)

Writers James Longenbach and Joanna Scott are spending part of this spring in the fishing village of Bogliasco, near Genoa, Italy. They’re recipients of fellowships from the Bogliasco Foundation, awarded for notable achievement in the arts and humanities. The fellowships will provide a one-month residency to further their work.

Longenbach is the James Henry Gilmore Professor of English. A poet and critic, he has a new book of poetry, Earthling, forthcoming this year. The fellowship will support work on his new critical book, Lyric Knowledge: How Poems Get Made, which is scheduled for publication next year.

With 11 novels and short story collections to her name—including, most recently, De Potter’s Grand Tour (Farrar, Scott & Giroux, 2014) and Follow Me (Little, Brown, 2009)—Scott is the Roswell Smith Burrows Professor of English. Her next novel, Careers for Women, will be published by Little, Brown in August. During her stay at Bogliasco, she’ll be working on a new project, “The Knowledge Gallery,” a collection of tales about books that can’t be found in any library.

(Wikimedia Commons / credit: Sidvics)

The pair aren’t only colleagues—they’re married, too. “The Italian landscape and language have been a part of our lives—our whole family’s life—for decades,” Longenbach says, calling the work each of them has created “inextricably bound up with experiences we’ve all had there, but also with the history of certain places, the vistas, the smells the weather, and the people.”

He welcomes the opportunity the fellowship in April offers, calling the time “to read and write and simply to be,” crucial. But “uncommonly invaluable,” he adds, “is this chance to be there.”

The award is available to people in a wide range of disciplines including dance, film and video, humanities scholarship, literature, music, theater, and visual arts. Kenneth Gross, the Alan F. Hilfiker Professor of English, is a previous Bogliasco Fellowship recipient, as is Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez, a professor of composition at the Eastman School of Music. This spring’s fellowship winners number 26, and come from 13 countries.

—Kathleen McGarvey, March 2017

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