Honorary Degrees
1918 - Present

Jorie  Graham 
Doctor of Humane Letters  2010
Status: conferred

Jorie Graham, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and MacArthur Award winner, currently is Boylston Professor of Rhetoric at Harvard University. She has been an accomplished and controversial figure since the publication of her first volume, Hybrids of Plants and of Ghosts,, 30 years ago. Expanding the limits of poetry to incorporate an ever-enlarging focus on history, social and scientific issues, as well as the traditional subjects of love and the inner life, she has changed what we think of as a poem. Raised in Rome and educated at the Sorbonne and New York University, Graham taught at the Iowa Writers Workshop before assuming the Harvard chair formerly occupied by John Quincy Adams, Robert Fitzgerald and Seamus Heaney. She has affected the lives of both students and readers, and has proved that poetry has an urgent hold on us in the 21st century. For her contributions to literature, Southern Methodist University is honored to confer upon Jorie Graham the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa.