About The Author




Poet, novelist, critic, and teacher Robert Penn Warren (1905-1989) was born in Guthrie, Kentucky.  A summa cum laude graduate of Vanderbilt University in 1925, Warren went on to receive a master’s degree from the University of California (1927) and studied at Yale University (1927-28) and at the University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar (B.Litt, 1930).  A prolific writer and scholar, Warren published sixteen volumes of poetry, ten books of fiction, a book of short stories, twelve books of nonfiction (including Who Speaks for the Negro in 1965), several textbooks, and two selections of essays.  He served as professor of English at Louisiana State University, at the University of Minnesota, and finally at Yale University, where he retired in 1973.

Robert Penn Warren won the Pulitzer Prize three times.  In 1946, he won the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction for his novel All the King’s Men.  He received his first Pulitzer Prize in Poetry in 1957 for Promises:  Poems, 1954-1956 and his second Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for Now and Then:  Poems, 1976-1978.  Warren was appointed the first Poet Laureate of the United States in 1985. Over the course of his long and distinguished career, Warren received many honors and accolades, including the National Medal for Literature, the Emerson-Thoreau Award of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Copernicus Award of the Academy of American Poets, the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for Poetry, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Common Wealth Award for Literature, and a Prize Fellowship of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.



Robert Penn Warren Center for the Humanities ©2024 | About | Contact