Edwidge Danticat is a writer of both fiction and non-fiction, whose moving and insightful depictions of Haiti’s complex history enrich our understanding of the Haitian immigrant experience. Writing for audiences from children to adults, her novels, short stories, and essays center on themes of family, community, and isolation. Danticat spent her 1999 residency writing and doing research for a children’s book (unpublished) about what happens to a daughter as her mother braids her hair. A month later, Danticat returned to give an Eye of the Beholder program about her work and her experiences at the Gardner Museum in a lecture titled A Writer at Fenway Court.
While grounded in a specific cultural milieu, her work resonates with readers worldwide and has been translated into French, German, Italian, Korean, Spanish, and Swedish. Her short stories have appeared in over 25 periodicals and are frequently anthologized. Danticat was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2009, and is the recipient of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Story Prize, a Lila Wallace Reader’s Digest Grant, and the National Book Critics Circle Award. She is also the editor of The Beacon Best of 2000: Great Writing by Men and Women of All Colors and Cultures and The Butterfly's Way: Voices from the Haitian Dyaspora in the United States (2001). She earned a degree in French literature from Barnard College, where she won the 1995 Woman of Achievement Award, and later earned an MFA in writing from Brown University. She lives and works in Miami.