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  • Maggie Nelson is the author of several acclaimed books of poetry and prose, many of which have become cult classics defying categorization. Her prose titles include Like Love: Essays and Conversations (2024), the national bestseller On Freedom: Four Songs of Care and Constraint (2021), National Book Critics Circle Award winner and international bestseller The Argonauts (2015), The Art of Cruelty: A Reckoning (2011), Bluets (2009; named by Bookforum as one of the top 10 best books of the past 20 years), The Red Parts: Autobiography of a Trial (2007), and Women, the New York School, and Other True Abstractions (2007). Her poetry titles include Something Bright, Then Holes (2007), Jane: A Murder (2005; finalist, the PEN/ Martha Albrand Art of the Memoir), The Latest Winter (2003), and Shiner (2001). She has been the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, an NEA grant, an Innovative Literature Fellowship from Creative Capital, an Arts Writers Fellowship from the Andy Warhol Foundation, and a MacArthur “genius” Fellowship. She holds a PhD from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and has taught at the New School, Wesleyan University, Pratt Institute of Art, and California Institute of the Arts. Since 2017 she has been a professor of English at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

  • Reviews

    Bluets is a collection of words that keeps vibrating, that can never be worn out.
    Peter Rock, The Rumpus

    It’s been said that a great writer can turn any subject into an engaging book...this is precisely what Bluets, Maggie Nelson’s arty, smart and gorgeous meditation on the color blue, sets out to do, and it is alarming how much drama she creates from a subject so apparently simple
    Time Out New York

    I never feel satisfied with poetry that is wholly cerebral or wholly emotional, so I love that Maggie Nelson’s writing gives me a philosophy fix along with a hit of Romantic sublime.
    Elisa Gabbert, Open Letters Monthly

    She veers, she collects, she assembles quotes, she confesses, she wheels unsignaled between ornate preciosity and the uncluttered blunt.
    John Latta, Isola di Rifiuti

    The proliferation of ideas from these bits and pieces of carefully reconstructed information is stunning. Nelson deftly weaves acutely felt emotions into her intellectual musings.
    The Blog of Disquiet

    Reviews of books by Maggie Nelson


  • - Maggie Nelson’s CalArts faculty home page

    - “On Color” (in Bookforum)

    Interviews and Discussions
    - The Poetry Foundation, with Wave author Anthony McCann
    - BOMBlog, with Susie Deford
    - Chaparral Review, with Kim Young
    - Continent, with Evan Lavender-Smith
    - Cecil Vortex, with Dan Brodnitz
    - Here Comes Everybody
    - A conversation between Maggie Nelson and Wayne Koestenbaum in The Poetry Project Newsletter
    - Bookslut, with Genevieve Hudson

  • Audio

    - Maggie Nelson’s page on PennSound
    - Reading from Bluets for LA-Lit
    - CABINET reading, with CAConrad, Eileen Myles, Wayne Koestenbaum, and others
    - Reading "poem for Harry" for The Poetry Project

    Reading at the Festival of Poets:

    Reading at the Poetic Research Bureau's Life Sentences festival of epigrammatic writing:  

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