2010-11 Bennett Fellows
Tom and Mary Gallagher Fellow
Uwem Akpan was born in Ikot Akpan Eda, in southern Nigeria. His first collection of stories, Say You’re One of Them
, received the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book, Africa region, and was an Oprah’s Book Club selection. The collection was also a finalist for the Los Angeles Times
Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, as well as a nominee for the Guardian First Book Award, the Caine Prize for African writing, and the Story Prize. He is the recipient of the 2009 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award and the 2009 PEN/Beyond Margins Award. While at BMI, Father Uwem will be working on a novel about street kids in Kenya, as well as a novel about child trafficking in Gabon. Father Uwem was ordained as a Jesuit priest in 2003 and is currently one of three priests in a 15,000-parishioner church in Mushin, Lagos, Nigeria. He received his MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan in 2006.
BMI - Kluge Fellow at the Library of Congress
Daniel Brook was born in Brooklyn, raised on Long Island, and educated at Yale. His first book, The Trap: Selling Out to Stay Afloat in Winner Take All America
, was published by Times Books/Henry Holt & Company in 2007, and he received a Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting Fellowship in 2008. During the Kluge Fellowship, he will be writing about the architectural history and Westernization of St. Petersburg, Shanghai, Mumbai, and Dubai. His writing about politics, economics, and architecture has appeared in publications such as Harper’s
, San Francisco Chronicle
, The Boston Globe
, The Huffington Post
, The Nation
, and Dissent
, among others. While at Yale, he won the 2000 Rolling Stone
College Journalism Competition and received the John Hersey Prize for an outstanding body of nonfiction work. He lives in Philadelphia.
Mary-Ann Tirone Smith
Diana L. Bennett Fellow
Mary-Ann Tirone Smith is the author of eight novels, and co-author of a ninth. Her book Girls of Tender Age: A Memoir
examines the murder of a classmate and her brother’s undiagnosed autism (both taboo subjects for discussion in the nineteen-fifties working-class neighborhood of her childhood); it was selected by Maureen Corrigan, of National Public Radio, as one of the best works of nonfiction of 2006, and has been widely read by discussion groups and book clubs. A former Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon, Mary-Ann has taught fiction writing at Fairfield University and participated in writing seminars throughout the country, as well as in Ireland. Her book reviews have appeared in The New York Times
, the Hartford Courant
, the Boston Globe
, and others. She lives in Connecticut.