Nebraska Authors

Kwame Dawes

Born 1962 (Ghana)

Chancellor's Professor of English at the University of Nebraska--Lincoln. Founder and director of Calabash, an international literary festival held in Jamaica. Editor of Prairie Schooner.

Places Lived

South Carolina
Iowa City, IA
Lincoln, NE

Author Of

  • Fiction
  • Nonfiction
  • Poetry


Poetry; fiction; literary criticism


Professor of English and Creative Writing, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE
Editor of Prairie Schooner
Artistic Director of the Calabash International Literary Festival

Places Worked

University of Nebraska - Lincoln


Poet Laureate of Jamaica, 2024-2027
John H. Ames Reading Series, Featured Reader, 14 April 2013
Barnes & Noble Writer for Writers Award, 2011
John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, 2012
Paul Engle Prize, 2013
In 2009, Dawes won an Emmy for LiveHopeLove.com, an interactive site based on Kwame Dawes’s Pulitzer Center project, HOPE: Living and loving with AIDS in Jamaica.


I Saw Your Face. 2005.
She's Gone. 2007.
Hope's Hospice. 2009.
Back of Mount Peace. 2010.
Wheels. 2011.
Duppy Conqueror. 2013.
The Kitchen-Dweller's Testimony. 2015.
New-Generation African Poets: A Chapbook Box Set. 2016.
When the Rewards Can Be So Great: Essays on Writing and the Writing Life. 2016.
City of Bones: A Testament. 2017.
Nebraska Poetry: A Sesquicentennial Anthology, 1867-2017. 2017. (Contributor).
Bivouac. 2019.

Kwame Dawes was the featured speaker at an Ames Reading Series program in April 2013, which can be viewed here:

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Kwame Dawes

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(e.g. Author is buried in Fremont, not in David City / Also wrote for the Daily Nebraskan during her time as a student)