Alan Kaufman

Photo Courtesy of Farrarr Strauss Giroux

Alan Kaufman is an American novelist, memoirist and poet who was instrumental in the development of the Spoken Word movement in literature.

Alan Kaufman's novel Matches was published by Little, Brown and Company in the Fall of 2005, and was published in the United Kingdom by Constable and Robinson the following year.His memoir — Jew Boy — was published by Fromm International/Farrar, Straus, and Giroux and Foxrock Books, imprint of Grove Press publisher and founder Barney Rosset.

David Mamet has called Kaufman's novel Matches "an extraordinary war novel," and Dave Eggers has written that "there is more passion here than you see in twenty other books combined". Ruth Prawer has praised Kaufman's memoir, Jew Boy as "astonishing...a grand epic of a memoir", while the San Francisco Chronicle called it a "classic coming of age story."

Both books are published as well in the UK by Constable and Robinson.

Kaufman is the editor of the bestselling 'The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry (Basic Books/Perseus). He is also co-editor of The Outlaw Bible of American Literature (Thunder's Mouth Press), alongside Barney Rosset and Neil Ortenberg. His other books include The Outlaw Bible of American Essays (Thunder's Mouth Press) and The New Generation: Fiction For Our Time From America's Writing Programs(Anchor/Doubleday).

Kaufman has written for The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Huffington Post, Salon, Evergreen Review, and numerous other publications.

He is Dean of The Free University of San Francisco and a co-founder Clayton Patterson of The Acker Awards, which are named after author Kathy Acker and given to authors and other artists in New York and San Francisco.

Kaufman's newest memoir, Drunken Angel, was published in 2011 by Viva Editions/Cleis Press and will be released as a paperback in April, 2013. His memoir Jew Boy is being made into a film by Plug Ugly Films&Silent Five Productions.

He is currently a New York Public Library Affiliated Scholar.



Alan Kaufman's books include the novel Matches (Little, Brown) and the memoirs Jew Boy (Fromm, FSG; Constable and Robinson; Foxrock Books) and Drunken Angel (Viva Editions,Cleis Press). He is the editor of The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry (Basic Books, Perseus); The Outlaw Bible of American Literature (with Barney Rosset and Neil Ortenberg; Basic Books, Perseus), The Outlaw Bible of American Essays (Basic Books, Perseus) and The New Generation: Fiction For Our Time From America's Writing Programs (Anchor, Doublelday). His essays, fiction and poetry have appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, Salon, Evergreen Review, Zzyzyvaa, Haaretz, Jerusalem Post and numerous other perioidicals and publications. He has been widely anthologized, most notably in Nothing Makes You Free: Writings From Descendents of Holocaust Survivors (WW Norton); Blood To Remember: American Poets On The Holocaust (TimeBeing Books); Aloud: Voices From The Nuyorican Poets Cafe (Henry Holt) and several anthologies of the New York-based avant garde collective, The Unbearables.

PEN America RSS feedFind PEN America on LinkedInFind PEN America on YouTubeFind PEN America on FacebookFind PEN America on Twitter