Keller receives Guggenheim Fellowship to study environmental poetry

April 15, 2015

English professor Lynn Keller is one of three University of Wisconsin-Madison faculty members to receive 2015 Guggenheim Fellowships, awards that support remarkable mid-career scholars and artists.

Keller, a faculty affiliate of the Nelson Institute Center for Culture, History and Environment, is among the 175 scholars, artists and scientists selected by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation out of more than 3,100 applicants for the honor on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise.

The Martha Meier Renk-Bascom Professor of Poetry, Keller studies contemporary North American poetry, particularly more experimental writing. She also researches recent environmental poetry.

Keller will be using her fellowship to complete an ecocritical study titled "Nature's Transformations: North American Poetry of the Anthropocene." The book will examine 21st-century poetry by U.S. and Canadian poets who are engaging with the diverse environmental issues humans are encountering now. Keller considers how experimentation with form and language may open fresh ways of understanding or responding to the environmental crises we face.

Guggenheim Fellowships are designed to give scholars and artists the flexibility to pursue creative endeavors across a wide range of disciplines, including writing, performing arts, humanities scholarship or scientific research. Former U.S. Sen. John Simon Guggenheim and his wife, Olga, established the fellowships in 1925 in honor of their late son John. Since then, the foundation has granted more than $325 million in fellowships to almost 18,000 individuals.

UW-Madison astronomy professor Amy Barger and mathematics professor Jordan Ellenberg also received 2015 fellowships.