Robyn Creswell

Current Fellow

Fellow: Awarded 2021

Field of Study: Literary Criticism

Competition: US & Canada

Robyn Creswell teaches comparative literature at Yale University and is author of the award-winning City of Beginnings: Poetic Modernism in Beirut. He is a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books and has also written for The New Yorker, The Nation, and Harper’s Magazine. A former poetry editor of The Paris Review, he is currently poetry editor-at-large for Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Creswell is the translator Abdelfattah Kilito’s The Tongue of Adam and The Clash of Images, both from the French, as well as Sonallah Ibrahim’s modernist masterpiece, That Smell and Notes from Prison, from the Arabic (all three published by New Directions). His translation of Iman Mersal’s collection of poems, The Threshold, will be published next year (FSG).

Creswell is currently at work on an intellectual history of the modern Arab world as told through the lives and works of its representative poets: Mahmoud Darwish, Adonis, Nazik al-Mala’ika, and others. It aims to show how modern poets have reimagined classical tropes and ideas for contemporary purposes, and how recent history can be illuminated by the ancient past.

Photo Credit: Annette Hornischer