News & Events
Toi Derricotte Reading
Toi Derricotte's new book, The Undertaker's Daughter, was just released by the University of Pittsburgh Press. Her previous books are Tender (1997), winner of the 1998 Paterson Poetry Prize; Captivity (1989); Natural Birth (1983); and The Empress of the Death House (1978). The Black Notebooks, her literary memoir, was published by W.W. Norton in 1997 and won the 1998 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Non-Fiction and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. She has essays published in The Best American Essays 2006, edited by Lauren Slater, and The Best American Essays 2011, edited by Edwidge Danticat. Of her poems, Sharon Olds wrote, "Toi Derricotte's poems show us our underlife, tender and dreadful. And they are vibrant poems, poems in the voice of the living creature, the one who escaped--and paused, and turned back, and saw, and cried out. This is one of the most beautiful and necessary voices in American poetry today".
Recognized as a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania in 2009, her honors include the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America; two Pushcart Prizes; the Distinguished Pioneering of the Arts Award from the United Black Artists; the Alumni/Alumnae Award from New York University; the Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award from Poets & Writers, Inc.; the Elizabeth Kray Award for service to the field of poetry from Poets House; and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation and the Maryland State Arts Council. In 2009, she received the University of Pittsburgh Chancellor's Distinguished Public Service Award. With Cornelius Eady, she co-founded Cave Canem Foundation. She is a Professor of English at the University of Pittsburgh.
Photo by Seichi Tsutsumi
Location: Helmut Stern Auditorium, UMMA