Hargrett Opens Judith Ortiz Cofer Papers for Research
The papers of Judith Ortiz Cofer, poet, novelist and member of the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, are now open for research at the University of Georgia Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library.
Cofer holds the Regents and Franklin Professor of Creative Writing chair at UGA. She has taught literature and creative writing at UGA since 1984. A native of Puerto Rico, Cofer moved to New Jersey with her parents as a child and to Georgia as a teenager.
“Judith Cofer’s works represent some of the finest examples of contemporary Georgia writing,” said P. Toby Graham, deputy university librarian and director of the Hargrett Library. “From her papers, scholars and students will glean valuable insights into the process of authorship and the ways that Cofer approaches her art.”
Cofer became the first Hispanic to win the O. Henry Award in 1994 for her short story, Nada, published in the Georgia Review. Her essay collection Woman in Front of the Sun: On Becoming a Writer won the Georgia Writers Association’s 2001 Georgia Author of the Year Award in creative nonfiction. In 2005 and 2008 the Georgia Center for the Book placed her works on its lists of 25 Books All Georgians Should Read—The Latin Deli in and The Meaning of Consuelo in 2008.
Her other published works include four novels: If I Could Fly (2011), Call Me María (2004), and The Line of the Sun (1989), her first work to be published by the University of Georgia Press. One of the earliest featured speakers of the Georgia Council for the Arts’ Georgia Poetry Circuit tour in the late 1980s, Cofer to date has published eight books of poetry. Her papers consist of 47 boxes of original and published material, including working drafts of novels, poems and essays; notebooks and journals; correspondence; and artwork.