RACHEL KUSHNER is an internationally bestselling author of novels such as ‘The Mars Room’, ‘The Flamethrowers’, ‘Telex from Cuba’, essay collection ‘The Hard Crowd’ and book of short stories ‘The Strange Case of Rachel K’. She has won the Prix Médicis and been a finalist for the Booker Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Folio Prize, and was twice a finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction. She is also a Guggenheim Foundation Fellow and the recipient of the Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

JAHAN RAMAZANI is an English professor at the University of Virginia. He is the author of many books of criticism on poetry, including the Harry Levin prize for best book in comparative literary history published in the years 2008 to 2010 ‘A Transnational Poetics’ and National Book Critics Circle Award finalist

‘Poetry of Mourning: The Modern Elegy from Hardy to Heaney’. Ramazani is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, an NEH Fellowship, a Rhodes Scholarship, the William Riley Parker Prize of the MLA, and the Thomas Jefferson Award.

BEN LERNER is the author of eight books of poetry and prose as well as several collaborations with visual artists. His new book of poetry, ‘The Lights’, was recently published by FSG, and his most recent novel, ‘The Topeka School’, won the Los Angeles Times Book Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He has received fellowships from the Fulbright, Guggenheim, and MacArthur Foundations, among other honors, and is a Distinguished Professor of English at Brooklyn College.