English Professor Dr. Anya Silver Awarded Prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship

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Dr. Anya Silver
Dr. Anya Silver

MACON – Mercer University Professor of English Dr. Anya Krugovoy Silver has been awarded a prestigious 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship.

Appointed on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise, 175 candidates were chosen from a group of almost 3,000 applicants in the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation’s 93rd competition.

“Anya is a remarkable woman, and I’m proud to call her a member of the faculty of the College of Liberal Arts at Mercer University. Her poetry reflects her journey in life in very honest and personal ways and serves as an inspiration to all of us,” said Dr. Anita Olson Gustafson, dean of the College of Liberal Arts. “I can’t think of anyone who is more deserving of this honor.”

Dr. Silver joined the faculty at Mercer in 2000 after earning her Ph.D. in English literature from Emory University and her bachelor’s degree in English literature and creative writing from Haverford College.

She is the author of four books of poetry. Her first three books, The Ninety-Third Name of God (2010), I Watched You Disappear (2014) and From Nothing (2016), were published with the Louisiana State University Press. Her most recent book, Second Bloom, was published in the Poiema Poetry Series of Cascade Press (2017).

“To bloom seems so foolish / that it must be wisdom,” Silver wrote in her poem, “August,” which concludes Second Bloom.

She was named Georgia Author of the Year in Poetry in 2015, and has been widely published in journals and anthologies, including Best American Poetry 2016, Poetry in Medicine, Between Midnight and Dawn, Writing on Napkins at the Sunshine Club and The Turning Aside: The Kingdom Book of Contemporary Christian Poetry. She has also published a book of literary criticism, Victorian Literature and the Anorexic Body (Cambridge University Press, 2006).

Her work engages with the trauma of chronic and terminal illness, and with religious faith and mystery, storytelling, memory, and the risks and rewards of being human.

She serves on the board of the Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation and is active in the cause of educating people about inflammatory breast and metastatic cancer.

The great variety of backgrounds, fields of study and accomplishments of Guggenheim Fellows is one of the unique characteristics of the Fellowship program. In all, 49 scholarly disciplines and artistic fields, 69 different academic institutions, 31 states, and three Canadian provinces are represented in this year’s class of Fellows, who range in age from 29 to 80.

“It’s exceptionally satisfying to name 175 new Guggenheim Fellows. These artists and writers, scholars and scientists, represent the best of the best. Each year since 1925, the Guggenheim Foundation has bet everything on the individual, and we’re thrilled to continue to do so with this wonderfully talented and diverse group. It’s an honor to be able to support these individuals to do the work they were meant to do,” said Edward Hirsch, president of the Guggenheim Foundation.

Since its establishment in 1925, the Foundation has granted more than $360 million in Fellowships to more than 18,000 individuals, among whom are scores of Nobel laureates, Fields Medalists, poets laureate, members of the various national academies and winners of the Pulitzer Prize, Turing Award, National Book Awards and other important, internationally recognized honors.

For more information, visit www.gf.org.