Duy Doan Wins 2017 Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition

Duy Doan has been selected as the winner of the 2017 Yale Series of Younger Poets competition for his manuscript, We Play a Game. Yale University Press will publish his book in April 2018. This article was originally published by Yale University Press.

Yale University Press is pleased to announce a winner in the 2017 Yale Series of Younger Poets competition. The judge, prize-winning and critically acclaimed poet Carl Phillips, has chosen Duy Doan’s manuscript, We Play a Game.

Series judge Carl Phillips says: “If games figure in Duy Doan’s We Play a Game, they do so much more seriously, and resonantly, than the title alone suggests. For game here can mean as well the strategies for weathering those parts of society that threaten identity itself, at the level of gender (in all its fluidity), or race, of family as history and tradition – of language, too, and our expectations for it. Wide-ranging in subject, Doan’s poems include boxing, tongue twisters, hedgehogs, Billie Holiday, soccer and, hardly least of all, a Vietnamese heritage that butts up against an American upbringing in ways at once comic, estranging, off-kiltering. Doan negotiates the distance between surviving and thriving, and offers here his own form of meditation on, ultimately, childhood, history, culture – who we are, and how – refusing all along to romanticize any of it.”

Duy Doan, 2017 Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition Winner

Yale University Press will publish We Play a Game in April 2018. The manuscript is Phillips’s seventh selection as judge and the 112th volume in the series. Carl Phillips’s sixth selection, Airea D. Matthews’s Simulacra will be published by Yale University Press on March 28, 2017.

Duy Doan is a Vietnamese American poet from Texas. A Kundiman fellow, he received his MFA in poetry from Boston University. His poems have appeared in SlateThe Cortland ReviewBest Emerging PoetsStay Thirsty MagazineAmethyst Arsenic, and elsewhere. A recipient of awards from the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the St. Botolph Club Foundation, Duy has taught at Boston University, Lesley University, and the Boston Conservatory. He is the director of the Favorite Poem Project, which celebrates the role of poetry in the lives of Americans. He lives in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts.

Awarded since 1919 by Yale University Press, the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize celebrates the most prominent new American poets by bringing the work of these artists to the attention of the larger public. Earlier winners of the prize include such talents as Adrienne Rich, John Ashbery, Jack Gilbert, Jean Valentine and Robert Hass. It is the longest-running poetry prize in the United States.

Yale University Press will also continue its partnership with The James Merrill House. Winners of the Series will receive one of the five writing fellowships offered at The James Merrill House in Stonington, CT. The fellowship provides a furnished living space and daily access to James Merrill’s apartment for a writer in search of a quiet setting to complete a project of literary or academic merit.

For more information or a photo of Duy Doan for publication, please contact Alden Ferro, Publicist, 203.432.0909, alden.ferro@yale.edu.


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