"Keeping up with him is like trying to keep up with Bob Dylan or Prince in their primes. Even the bootlegs have bootlegs."

—Dwight Garner, New York Times

Biography

Kevin Young
Kevin Young | Photo: Melanie Dunea See other photos

Kevin Young is the director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, recently named a National Historic Landmark, and poetry editor of the New Yorker, where he also hosts the poetry podcast. He is the author of thirteen books of poetry and prose, most recently Brown (Knopf, 2018), as featured on the Daily Show with Trevor Noah; Blue Laws: Selected & Uncollected Poems 1995-2015 (Knopf, 2016), longlisted for the National Book Award; and Book of Hours (Knopf, 2014), a finalist for the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and winner of the Lenore Marshall Prize for Poetry from the Academy of American Poets. His collection Jelly Roll: a blues (Knopf, 2003) was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.

Young’s second nonfiction book, Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts & Fake News (Graywolf Press, 2017), won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Nonfiction, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award, was longlisted for the National Book Award, and was named a New York Times Notable Book. He is the editor of nine other collections, including the anthology African American Poetry 1770–2020: 250 Years of Struggle & Song, forthcoming from Library of America in fall 2020.

He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and was named a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 2020.

Read Kevin's Extended Biography