Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2011 12:00 am

Grinnell, IA - Writers@Grinnell will open the spring semester with readings by four Grinnell College professors who recently published in “Papa PhD,” a collection of essays about fatherhood and academia.

Grinnell writers David Campbell, professor of biology; Mark Montgomery, professor of economics; Ira Strauber, professor of political science; and associate professor of English Ralph Savarese, who co-edited “Papa PhD,” will offer a combined reading from their personal essays on Jan. 27.

On Feb. 4, poet Richard Kenney will read from works recognized by the Academy of American Poets, the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. A member of the faculty at the University of Washington, Kenney has published poems in The New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly and American Scholar.

Writers@Grinnell will co-sponsor a Feb. 17 Scholars’ Convocation by Pulitzer Prize winner Yusef Komunyakaa, whose poetry first received attention in 1984 for its use of colloquial speech with jazz influences. Komunyakaa earned a Bronze Star from service in Vietnam, and his writing has been cited among the best about the war. His convocation talk will be at 11 a.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ‘25 Center on the Grinnell campus.

On Feb. 24, Writers@Grinnell will host distinguished author Dorothy Allison, who describes herself as “a working class storyteller, Southern expatriate, sometime poet, and happily born-again Californian.” Allison is also a best-selling novelist whose 1998 “Cavedweller” became a New York Times “Notable Book of the Year” and movie.

On Mar. 3, South African writer Zakes Mda will present his award-winning work on post-Apartheid consumerism in his home country. His writing crosses many genre, as does his current work as a creative writing professor at Ohio University, beekeeper in the Eastern Cape, dramaturge at Johannesburg’s Market Theater, and director of the Southern African Multimedia AIDS Trust. Mda will read in Faulconer Gallery at 8 p.m., amid the South African art exhibition “Of Fables and Folly.”

Writers@Grinnell events will be held at 8 p.m. in Room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center, 1115 8th Ave. on the Grinnell College campus, unless otherwise noted. Works by the authors are available from the Pioneer Bookshop in downtown Grinnell. The college welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. If accommodations are needed, please contact the event’s sponsoring organization as soon as possible to make a request.