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CCC English Professor Honored with Award by Legendary Book Shop


A forthcoming first book of poetry by a Camden County College faculty member has received an accolade from a historic bookstore known for its association with legendary poets such as e.e. cummings, T.S. Eliot, Robert Lowell, Allen Ginsberg and Denise Levertov.


The Grolier Poetry Book Shop, located on Harvard Square in Cambridge, Mass., selected Keith O’Shaughnessy’s Incommunicado to receive its 2011 Grolier Discovery Award. Grolier Press will publish the Princeton resident’s book in April, and he will give a reading at the shop this spring as well. New Jersey poet and Rutgers University faculty member Rachel Hadas, a mentor of O’Shaughnessy’s, characterizes Incommunicado as a paradoxically “lush and austere” composition on themes that include art, appetite, beauty and decay.


In addition to Incommunicado, O’Shaughnessy has published three shorter volumes – or chapbooks – with Pudding House Publications: Carnaval (2009), The Devil’s Party (2010) and Snegurochka (2010). He also has published individual poems in periodicals such as Columbia Magazine, Able Muse and Measure. An interview he completed with 322 Review last year, “On Poetry with O’Shaughnessy,” may be viewed at


At Camden County College, O’Shaughnessy teaches literature, creative writing and composition. He also serves on the curriculum, composition and literature committees and is the founder and adviser of the Dead Poets Society student writers group. He also revived a past school tradition by organizing large-scale faculty readings each spring since he joined the College’s instructional staff.


Before coming to CCC, O’Shaughnessy was an adjunct professor at Kean University, Stevens Institute of Technology, Union County College, Mercer County Community College and Raritan Valley Community College; a composition instructor at Drew University; and a part-time lecturer at Rutgers–Camden and Rutgers–Newark. Before becoming a college instructor, he was a high school English teacher – first at Hudson Catholic Regional High School and then at Saint Dominic Academy, both in Jersey City.


O’Shaughnessy holds a bachelor of arts degree in English from Columbia College of Columbia University in New York City as well as a master of arts degree in creative writing from Rutgers–Newark and a master of arts degree in English from Drew University. He is working to complete his doctorate in English at Drew later this year.

Published: February 15, 2011