Lexington’s Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning recognized several Kentucky authors for its annual Writers Hall of Fame Wednesday.
The event honored six writers for their contributions to the literary culture of the commonwealth, including University of Kentucky Professor Guy Davenport, Affralachian poet Effie Waller Smith, gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Traditionally, the center honors deceased writers, with spotlights of their works read by family members or local authors. However, for the first time, they honored a living writer, Wendell Berry. When asked about the award, Berry said he felt a strong sense of kinship with his fellow inductees.
“I know a number of the ones, the absent ones that have been honored, and there were a number of people present tonight who meant a lot to me, so I was surrounded by friends of the past and the present,” he said.
In his speech, Berry praised Kentucky for its literary tradition, and stressed the need for capable authors to keep it alive.