Fanny Howe (born 1940 in Boston, Massachusetts) is an American poet, novelist, and short story writer. She has written many novels in prose collection, and is the mother of novelist Danzy Senna. Her father was a lawyer and her Irish-born mother played in the Abbey Theatre of Dublin for some time. Howe is the recipient of the 2009 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, presented annually by the Poetry Foundation to a living U.S. poet whose lifetime accomplishments warrant extraordinary recognition. She is a sister of Susan Howe, also a poet. Howe has become (arguably) one of the most widely read of American experimental poets. She has also published several volumes of prose, including Lives of the Spirit/Glasstown: Where Something Got Broken (2005) and The Wedding Dress: Meditations on Word and Life (2003), a collection of essays. Several awards have been awarded to her, namely the 2001 Lenore Marshall and Poetry Prize, and the 2005 Griffin Poetry Prize. She is currently a professor emeritus of Writing and Literature at the University of California, San Diego. Poet Michael Palmer commented: "Fanny Howe employs a sometimes fierce, always passionate, spareness in her lifelong parsing of the exchange between matter and spirit. Her work displays as well a political urgency, that is to say, a profound concern for social justice and for the soundness and fate of the polis, the "city on a hill". Writes Emerson, The poet is the sayer, the namer, and represents beauty. Here's the luminous and incontrovertible proof." Bewildered in Boston by Joshua Glenn states that "Fanny Howe isn't part of the local literary canon. But her seven novels about interracial love and utopian dreaming offer a rich social history of Boston in the 1960s and '70s."
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