Elisa New is the Director and Host of Poetry in America, director of the Center for Public Humanities at Arizona State University, director of Verse Video Education, and Powell M. Cabot Professor of American Literature at Harvard University.
New created Poetry in America, a PBS series, to bring poetry beyond classrooms into living rooms and onto screens of all kinds. The show can be seen on public television and streaming platforms, in schools and libraries, and on airlines. Guests include Joe Biden, Herbie Hancock, Gloria Estefan, Shaquille O’Neal, Elena Kagan, Nas, John McCain, Sonia Sanchez, Tony Kushner, Bill Clinton, Julia Alvarez, Bono, Cynthia Nixon, John Kerry, LisaGay Hamilton, Caroline Kennedy, Bill T. Jones, Katie Couric, and Al Gore and dozens of others.
Alongside the PBS series, New produces educational materials on American poetry for all ages—from middle- and high-school students, to K-12 teachers, to lifelong learners—distributed by Harvard University, Amplify Education, and Arizona State University. In her capacity as Director of the newly established Center for the Public Humanities at ASU, New will partner with ASU faculty and with partners from an array of other institutions to create relevant, engaging interdisciplinary content that extends beyond poetry: content that will broaden access to the highest quality learning experiences in the Humanities and adjacent fields.
New is the author of The Regenerate Lyric: Theology and Innovation in American Poetry (Cambridge University Press, 1992); The Line’s Eye: Poetic Experience, American Sight (Harvard University Press, 1999); Jacob’s Cane: A Jewish Family’s Journey from the Four Lands of Lithuania to the Ports of London and Baltimore: A Memoir in Five Generations (Basic Books, 2009); and New England Beyond Criticism: In Defense of America’s First Literature, A Wiley Blackwell Manifesto (Wiley Blackwell 2014).
© 2023 Poetry in America and Verse Video Education. All rights reserved