Susan Stewart

Avalon Foundation University Professor in the Humanities, Emeritus; Professor of English, Emeritus

A poet, critic, and translator, Susan Stewart is the Avalon Foundation University Professor in the Humanities and Professor of English. She is a member of the Associated Faculty of the Department of Art and Archaeology and serves as the editor of the Princeton Series of Contemporary Poets.  From 2009 to 2017, she was the Director of Princeton's Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts. She teaches the history of poetry, literary criticism, and aesthetics.

Stewart's newest book of criticism is The Ruins Lesson: Meaning and Material in Western CultureHer other recent books of prose includeThe Poet's Freedom: A Notebook on Making; Poetry and the Fate of the Senses, which won the Christian Gauss Award for Literary Criticism from Phi Beta Kappa and the Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism; The Open Studio: Essays on Art and Aesthetics, a collection of her writings on contemporary art; Crimes of Writing; On Longing; and Nonsense. Her most recent books of poetry are Cinder: New and Selected Poems (2017, Graywolf Press); Red Rover, Columbarium, which won the 2003 National Book Critics Circle award, and The Forest. Her translations include Love Lessons: Selected Poems of Alda Merini, and she has published co-translations with her Princeton colleague Sara Teardo--Laudomia Bonanni's novel, The Reprisal-- and, with Patrizio Ceccagnoli, two books of poetry by Milo De Angelis--Theme of Farewell and After-Poems. She also has translated Euripides' Andromache with Wesley Smith and the poetry and selected prose of the Scuola Romana painter Scipione with Brunella Antomarini.

Stewart often collaborates with artists and composers. Her song cycle, "Songs for Adam," commissioned by the Chicago Symphony with music by the composer James Primosch, had its world premiere with baritone Brian Mulligan and the CSO, Sir Andrew Davis conducting, in October 2009. She also has worked with the Italian painter Sandro Chia, the Network for New Music, and, most often, the artist Ann Hamilton. In 2016-2017, her long poem, Channel, appeared in The Paris Review and was part of an installation by Hamilton presented in Philadelphia and Minneapolis.

A former MacArthur Fellow and recipient of Princeton's Behrman Award in the Humanities, Stewart served as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 2005-2011. She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005 and in the Spring of 2009 she received an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 2014, she was a Berlin Prize Fellow at the American Academy in Berlin. In 2020 she will deliver the Clarendon Lectures at Oxford University.