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Alan Williamson


One of the most important poet-critics of his generation, Alan Williamson has received a National Endowment of the Arts fellowship and a Guggenheim fellowship. Williamson has taught for the UC Davis English Department since 1983. He previously taught at the University of Virginia, Harvard University, and at Brandeis University.

Alan Williamson studied poetry with Robert Lowell at Harvard University, earning a Ph.D. in 1969. While Williamson published numerous works, including both literary criticism and his own poetry, Williamson’s Pity the Monsters: The Political Vision of Robert Lowell (1974) helped distinguish him as an esteemed poet-critic. The University of Chicago Press stated that Williamson was “the unequalled detective of the mythic reverberations behind the psyche’s complex inner weather.”

The new millennium brought new works by Williamson. The Pattern More Complicated: New and Selected Poems (2004) inspired this praise from the University of Chicago Press: “Williamson’s verse is a refreshing example of how delicately the personal can intersect with the public in a love for the considered life . . . and the recurrence of themes across the span of four previous collections [presents] a survey of a major American poet in a single volume.”

Further information about this performer:


Alan Williamson performed on May 8th, 2007 and on February 2nd, 2012