In memoriam: Dr. Annette Allen

We regret to announce that Dr. Annette Allen, Professor Emerita of Humanities, died on December 13, 2020, surrounded by her family.

Picture of Annette AllenWe regret to announce that Dr. Annette Allen, Professor Emerita of Humanities, died on December 13, 2020, surrounded by her family.

Dr. Allen was instrumental in establishing the Humanities PhD Program in 2002 and founded and coordinated the Beijing Humanities doctoral program as well. She was a beloved mentor and advised numerous graduate theses and dissertations in many fields, most notably creative writing. She published widely in poetry anthologies and journals and authored three books of poetry: Country of Light (Mount Olive College Press, 1996), which received the Lee Davenport Witte Award; What Vanishes (Arable Press, 2006), which was awarded the Dr. Guy Award by the Winston-Salem Arts Council; and The Cruel Radiance of What Is (Negative Capability Press, 2019). A MacDowell Colony Fellow, she was the recipient of three statewide arts council poetry awards and recently a Poetry Fellowship from the Kentucky Arts Council for 2018–2019.

Dr. Allen is survived by her husband, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy Osborne Wiggins; her sons, Monty and Mark; her stepdaughter Pinkney; and her grandchildren, Dylan and Amber. A memorial service is planned for a later date.


“Landscape”
(from What Vanishes)

What ideals alter is the perception of things,
the changing surfaces that argument reveals
to be illusory. Yet still one tries, drawn

forward by the promises, the thought
of something time may never realize,
both inexhaustible and contained

by what is waiting to be discovered
in a landscape of the unattained
where one lays aside the mind
and lets the world come.