Amitava Kumar is a writer, journalist, and the Helen D. Lockwood Professor of English at Vassar College. He was born in Ara, and grew up in the nearby town of Patna, famous for its corruption, crushing poverty and delicious mangoes.
He is the author of several books of non-fiction, including the highly acclaimed, “exuberantly inquisitive collection of essays”, Lunch With a Bigot. In 2016, Amitava Kumar was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship (General Nonfiction) as well as a Ford Fellowship in Literature from United States Artists. Kumar’s forthcoming title Immigrant, Montana: A Novel, which came out in India recently under the title The Lovers: A Novel, has already received extensive praise.
Kumar is a board member at the Asian American Writers Workshop, a contributing editor at Guernica as well as Caravan, serves on the editorial board of several other publications, and co-edits the web-journal Politics and Culture. His non-fiction and poetry has been published in The New York Times, NPR, The Nation, Harper’s, Kenyon Review, Vanity Fair, Guernica, India Today, and Himal to name a few. He is also the script-writer and narrator of the prize-winning documentary film, Pure Chutney (1997). In 2013, Amitava Kumar collaborated with Teju Cole on an ekphrastic project entitled “Who’s Got the Address?”
Amitava Kumar is represented by the literary agency David Godwin Associates Ltd.