“Bugan, a published poet, can with a single sentence paint a portrait of almost visceral immediacy.[…] If Bugan’s memoir is transformative, her poetry is downright alchemical, transmuting the deprivations of her family’s life experiences into dreamy gold.” —The Irish Times

“[…] what I feel most in these poems is an earnest voice, quiet but determined, taut with the discipline to sail past temptation, like Odysseus among the sirens—temptations to lose one’s self in lamentation, accusation, revenge.”The Manhattan Review

Dr. Carmen Bugan is a prize-winning writer based in Long Island, NY. She was born in Romania and has lived in England, Ireland, and France.  Educated at the University of Michigan and Balliol College, Oxford University, UK, with a PhD in English Literature, she is the author of four collections of poems, an internationally acclaimed memoir, and a highly praised critical study. Her work has been translated into several languages and appears in publications such as PEN Atlas, Modern Poetry in Translation, the TLS, Harvard Review, PN Review, and others.

She was a fellow at the Hawthornden International Retreat for Writers (Scotland), a Creative Arts Arts Fellow in Literature at Wolfson College, Oxford University (UK), has received a major individual grant from the Arts Council of England, and has taught creative writing and literature in the US, UK, and Switzerland.

Carmen appears at book fairs and festivals such as the London Book Fair, the Cork Literary Festival, The Goteborg Book Fair, and Le Livre sur les Quais (Morges, Switzerland).  She is a member of the Geneva Writers Group. In 2014 she has presented a long form documentary for the BBC World News and the World Service called ‘The Man Who Went Looking for Freedom’ on the story of her family, which is the subject of much of her writing. In 2017 Carmen was made a George Orwell Prize Fellow.

She teaches memoir, creative writing, and provides book doctoring and private tutorials at the Gotham Writers’ Workshop in New York City.  Carmen Bugan was the 2018 Helen DeRoy Professor in Honors at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where she lectured on Poetry and the Language of Oppression. Carmen was also the 2018 Dow Visiting Scholar at Saginaw Valley State University, where she gave a keynote lecture on poetry in a time of politics. She chairs a monthly poetry reading series called Literary Excursions, at the Setauket Neighborhood House in East Setauket, NY, a platform  she has created in 2016 to support the local poets.

Please see Carmen’s profiles from the POETRY FOUNDATION and POETS AND WRITERS.

Listen /Watch Carmen (and others) talk about her work:

On MONOCLE radio–THE FOREIGN DESK talking about life behind the Iron Curtain

ON ABC talking about the Cold War in a series of programs on Why the Cold War Still Matters

World of ideas–Reading with AE Stallings at Boston University, October 2019

University of Michigan Residential College Podcast: Carmen Bugan and the Language of Freedom

This is a short selection of  poems, articles and interviews around the web.  Other links to media interviews, reviews, and work, appear under the specific books which generated interest:

My work as a BOOK Reviewer for Harvard Review Online

Irish Times Poem of the Week, Moon

Irish Times Poem of the Week Feature, Rings

Irish Times, Poem of the Week Feature, Preparing for the Journey of Return

English PEN essay on Wole Soyinka

English PEN essay on My Archival Identity

Oxford University Life Writing Series podcast on writing about oppression

American Library in Paris, essay, About a Story

Geneva Writers’ Group blog, The House of Shells

Geneva Writers Group blog, Being an Immigrant Writer

Poems in PN Review (UK)

A longer selection of my poems, and an interview in PN Review

Interview in New Statesman, with Jonathan Derbyshire

BBC Magazine long form feature essay, How My Childhood Was Tracked by the Secret Police

Balliol College Oxford, Annual Record piece

Poets and Writers short excerpt from my memoir Burying the Typewriter