New York, November 1—A book of poems exploring New York City's poor, homeless, and disenfranchised has been named the year's most outstanding collection of poetry.
Anne Winters's book, The Displaced of Capital, won the Lenore Marshall Prize from the Academy of American Poets and The Nation magazine, the Academy announced on Tuesday. The Marshall prize is an annual award of $25,000 for the best book of poetry published in the United States during the previous year.
The Displaced of Capital, published by the University of Chicago Press, is Ms. Winters's second collection of poems, a follow-up to her 1986 book The Key to the City, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle award.
"The displaced of capital come to the capital," Ms. Winters writes in the book's title poem, exploring the link between the allure of New York City and the harsh realities of global capitalism—Third World labor, poverty, immigration, and the erasure of local culture.
"A shift in structure of experience," she writes, "told the farmer on his Andean plateau / 'Your way of life is obsolescent.'"
The Displaced of Capital was chosen from more than 160 submissions. The jurors for the award were Louise Glück, Robert Pinsky, and Alan Shapiro. Of the book, Mr. Pinsky wrote:
"Anne Winters’s The Displaced of Capital is innovative, even startling, in ways that make its materials not remote but immediate. Vivid and reflective, documentary and visionary, re-imagining the city of New York with the same urgency that ponders the opening words of Genesis, this is a passionate, artful and re-readable book."
An essay by Robert Pinsky on the award-winning collection, and a selection of Ms. Winters's poems, will appear in The Nation.
The finalists for the 2005 Marshall Award award were: Marianne Boruch, Poems: New and Selected (Oberlin College Press), Sharon Olds, Strike Sparks (Knopf), Claudia Rankine, Don’t Let Me Be Lonely (Graywolf Press), Michael Ryan, New and Selected Poems (Houghton Mifflin), and Jean Valentine, Door in the Mountain: New and Selected Poems (Wesleyan University Press).
Ms. Winters will be reading selections from her book on Thursday, November 3, in New York City at the annual Awards Ceremony, sponsored by the Academy of American Poets.
Anne Winters is the author of The Displaced of Capital (University of Chicago Press, 2004 ), which this year was also awarded the annual William Carlos Williams Prize, and of The Key to the City (1986) , which was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her translations of contemporary French poet Robert Marteau were awarded Poetry Magazine’s Jacob Glatstein Memorial Prize. She has published poems and essays in The New Republic, The New Yorker, Paris Review, Poetry, and The Yale Review, as well as journals in France, Canada and Italy. She was a recipient of the 2003 Academy Award for Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as an Ingram Merrill Foundation grant, Wellesley College’s Sara Teasdale Poetry Award, and a National Endowment of the Arts grant. She has also been a Fellow of the Fondation Camargo and the Fondation Károlyi in the south of France.
The Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize was established by the New Hope Foundation in 1975 and is now administered by the Academy of American Poets in conjunction with The Nation. The prize is named in honor of Lenore Marshall (1897–1971), a poet, novelist, essayist, and political activist. Lenore Marshall published three novels, three books of poetry, a collection of short stories, and selections from her notebooks. Her work also appeared in such distinguished literary magazines as The New Yorker, The Saturday Review, and Partisan Review. In 1956 she helped found the National Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy, the citizens’ organization that lobbied successfully for passage of the 1963 partial nuclear test ban treaty.
The Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize was first awarded in 1975 and has been given annually ever since. The previous winners are John Ashbery, Sterling A. Brown, Hayden Carruth, Wanda Coleman, Cid Corman, Madeline DeFrees, David Ferry, Eamon Grennan, Thom Gunn, Marilyn Hacker, John Haines, Donald Hall, Fanny Howe, Josephine Jacobsen, Mark Jarman, Stanley Kunitz, Denise Levertov, Philip Levine, John Logan, Thomas McGrath, W. S. Merwin, Josephine Miles, Howard Moss, Robert Pinsky, Donald Revell, Adrienne Rich, Michael Ryan, George Starbuck, Allen Tate, and Charles Wright.
The Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize is endowed by a gift to the Academy of American Poets from the New Hope Foundation, which for more than forty years worked to support literature, the arts, and world peace.
The Academy of American Poets was founded in 1934 to support American poets at all stages of their careers and to foster the appreciation of contemporary poetry. Through its awards program, the Academy awards well over $200,000 each year to individual poets. These awards include the Academy Fellowship, the Wallace Stevens Award, the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, the James Laughlin Award, the Walt Whitman Award, the Raiziss/de Palchi Translation Award, the Harold Morton Landon Translation Award, and student poetry prizes at nearly 200 colleges and universities. The Academy also administers National Poetry Month (April), the Online Poetry Classroom, and the Poetry Audio Archive, American Poet magazine, and Poets.org, our award-winning website.
The Nation, founded in 1865, is America’s oldest weekly magazine. Well known as a journal of political analysis, The Nation also has a long and distinguished literary history. Such notable writers as Henry James, William James, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and James Russell Lowell were among its original contributors. Many poets have contributed to its pages, including T. S. Eliot, William Butler Yeats, Emily Dickinson, W. H. Auden, Wallace Stevens, Ezra Pound, Robert Frost, and Robert Lowell. Each year the magazine and the Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y co-sponsor “Discovery”/The Nation, an award for younger poets. The Nation first joined with the New Hope Foundation to present the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize in 1982. To find out more about The Nation and for excellent writing on politics, culture, books and the arts, go to www.thenation.com.