8 Haitian Authors You Should Know
The following is a list of 8 Haitian authors you should know. Their wide ranging work and recognition has granted them awards such as the Book Critics Circle Award, the MacArthur Fellow, the Prix Médicis, honorary degrees, and many other recognitions for their literary work.
Edwidge Danticat is the author of several books, including Breath, Eyes, Memory, an Oprah Book Club selection, Krik? Krak!, a National Book Award finalist, The Farming of Bones, The Dew Breaker, Create Dangerously, and Claire of the Sea Light. She is also the editor of The Butterfly’s Way: Voices from the Haitian Dyaspora in the United States, Best American Essays 2011, Haiti Noir and Haiti Noir 2. She has written six books for children and young adults, Anacaona, Behind the Mountains, Eight Days. The Last Mapou, Mama’s Nightingale, Untwine,as well as a travel narrative, After the Dance. Her memoir, Brother, I’m Dying, was a 2007 finalist for the National Book Award and a 2008 winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for autobiography. She is a 2009 MacArthur fellow.
Dany Laferrière was born in Port-au-Prince in 1953. After his father, a former mayor of the city, was forced into exile in 1959, Dany was raised by his grandmother in the coastal village of Petit-Goâve. He returned to Port-au-Prince five years later and eventually became a culture reporter for Le petit samedi soir and Radio Haiti-Inter. When his colleague and friend Gasner Raymond was assassinated in 1976, Laferrière fled to Montreal, where he supported himself with a series of odd jobs. In 1985, he published his first novel, How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired, which chronicled those first years of his exile. But it wasn’t until 2009, when he received the Prix Médicis for his nineteenth book.
Danielle Legros Georges is a writer, artist, and teacher whose areas of interest include the arts and education, contemporary American poetry, Caribbean literature and studies, and literary translation. Legros Georges’ awards include a 2015 Brother Thomas Artists Fellowship; a 2014 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship in Poetry; and a 2013 Black Metropolis Research Consortium Fellowship / Andrew W. Mellon Grant. She is a professor in the Creative Arts and Learning Division of Lesley University, and a faculty member of the Joiner Institute Summer Writers’ Workshop, at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. In 2016 she was awarded an honorary degree of doctor of humane letters from Emerson College. She is poet laureate of the City of Boston.
Jean Dany Joachim, Cambridge Poet Populist from 2009 to 2011, and the current Poet in Residence at First Church in Cambridge, is also an author of short stories and plays. He created the Many Voices Project, a series of readings and follow-up poetry workshops, inspiring conversations about race and equality. He has three published collections of poetry, Crossroads / Chimenkwaze (2013), Avec des Mots (2014), and Quartier (2016). He is the director of City Night Readings, a series featuring diverse poetic talents, writers, and artists. Jean Dany is a 2017 Massachusetts Cultural Council grant recipient for his play:Your Voice Poet.
Ibi Zoboi holds an MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. Her writing has been published in The New York Times Book Review, the Horn Book Magazine, and The Rumpus, among others. Her debut novel, American Street, was published by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers and has received five starred reviews. Her next YA novel, PRIDE, is due out in the Fall of 2018. Her middle grade debut, My Life as an Ice-Cream Sandwich is forthcoming from Dutton/Penguin Books. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, and their three young children.
Patrick Sylvain is a poet, writer, translator, photographer, and academic. He is a faculty member at Brown University’s Center for Language Studies. He is published in several anthologies, academic journals, books, magazines, and reviews, including African American Review, Agni, American Poetry Review, Callaloo, Caribbean Writers, and many others. He has been featured on PBS NewsHour, NPR’s Here and Now and The Story. Sylvain’s academic essays are anthologized in several edited collections, including The Idea of Haiti: Rethinking Crisis and Development, edited by Millery Polyné, and Politics and Power in Haiti. Sylvain graduated as a Conant Fellow from Harvard University Graduate School of Education, where he received his EdM, and also holds an MFA from Boston University, where he was a Robert Pinsky Global Fellow.
Katia D. Ulysse was born in Haiti, and moved to the United States as a teen. Her fiction and essays have been published internationally in literay journals, including The Caribbean Writer, Macomère, Meridians, Calabash, Peregrine, Smartish Pace, among others. You can find her stories in The Butterfly's Way and Haiti Noir (edited by Edwidge Danticat); Mozayik, Brassage, and others. Her first children's book, Fabiola Can Count, was published in 2013. Drifting is her debut work of fiction. When she's not reading, writing, gardening, teaching, or blogging, she roams the earth in the form of a pink unicorn.
Pierre Alex Jeanty, Founder of Gentlemenhood™ and CEO of Jeanius Publishing, is a Haitian-American author, poet, and influencer, who is devoted to making an impact through his writing. He primarily focuses on poetically sharing his journey, lessons, and mistakes along the paths of manhood and love. Pierre vows to share his wisdom with all, in hopes of inspiring men to become better, and to be a voice of hope to women who have lost faith in good men. This is the vision of his brand, and the agenda he follows as a writer.