NYU Creative Writing Remembers E.L. DoctorowThe NYU Creative Writing Program mourns the loss of E.L. Doctorow, a gifted teacher and guiding light in our community for more than three decades, and a visionary and beloved presence in support of the creative work of a generation of new writers. Professor Doctorow held the Lewis and Loretta Glucksman Chair of English and American Letters at NYU since 1987, and had been on the NYU faculty since 1983. His many books include the novels Billy Bathgate, Ragtime, The Book of Daniel, The March, and Andrew’s Brain, among others, as well as several collections of short stories and essays.
Doctorow’s Craft of Fiction course was legendary, and his mentorship was truly inspiring and essential to so many of our students. He helped set the tone of the program from its early years, and was especially supportive of our community outreach programs, through which our students teach writing to hospitalized children, disabled adults, disadvantaged students in the New York City public schools, and recent veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The world knows E.L. Doctorow as one of the literary greats—the innovative and brilliant author of twelve novels and winner of numerous honors, including the National Book Award, three National Book Critics Circle Awards, two PEN Faulkner Awards, the Edith Wharton Citation for Fiction, the presidentially-conferred National Humanities Medal, and the Library of Congress Prize for American Fiction. We’ve been blessed to know him beyond his legendary writing, as a model by which one may construct a life in letters. He will be deeply missed.