Collection consists of the literary works, academic files, and personal papers, photographs, and correspondence of Carol Muske-Dukes,
California poet laureate and USC professor of creative writing. The materials cover the period from the early 1960s to 2008.
Carol Muske-Dukes is a writer and educator, whose body of work stretches from the 1970s forward and whose achievements as
an educator include the founding of two creative writing programs--one for inmates of New York area prisons and the other,
a PhD. program in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Southern California (USC). Muske-Dukes, an accomplished
poet, novelist, and essayist, has won a number of different awards, including the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award (Poetry Society
of America), the Witter Bynner Award (Library of Congress), and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the
John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. While Muske-Dukes' career in education includes a number of notable positions, including
brief stints at the University of Iowa's International Writing Program, University of California at Irvine, and the Writing
Division at Columbia University, her most notable achievements include the establishment of the aforementioned doctoral program
in Literature and Creative Writing at USC and Free Space/Art Without Walls. What is distinctive about Muske-Dukes as both
an artist and educator--though it is perhaps false to draw a line between the two--involves the blurring or challenging of
conventional boundaries: the boundary between art and science (as evident in her novel Saving St. Germ), the boundary between
"high" culture that the academic world can embody and the street culture which may be attributed to the incarcerated, and
between established themes that have marked the tradition of Western literature and the more politically charged themes that
may be seen as less transcendent in nature.
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