Hope Wabuke's Profile Image
Associate Professor of English


Hope Wabuke is a Ugandan American poet, essayist, and writer. She is the author of the poetry collection The Body Family (forthcoming from Haymarket Books in spring 2022) and the chapbooks her, The Leaving, and Movement No.1: Trains. Her nonfiction book Please Don't Kill My Black Son, Please will be published by Vintage Books, a division of Penguin Random House, in winter 2022.

Hope has published widely in various magazines, among them The Guardian, The Root, Los Angeles Review of Books, NPR, The Sun Literary Journal, Creative Nonfiction Magazine, The Daily Beast, Ms. Magazine online, Lit Hub, Ozy, Salon, Gawker, The Hairpin, Dame, The North American Review, Salamander Journal, Tupelo Quarterly, and elsewhere. She writes literary and cultural criticism for NPR.

Hope has received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Book Critics Circle, The New York Times Foundation, the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund for Women Writers, Cave Canem, the Awesome Foundation, Yale University’s THREAD Writer’s Program, The Poetry Foundation, and the Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundation (VONA).

Hope currently serves as Poetry Editor for Ruminate Magazine and is an Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. She is a former contributing editor for The Root, where she originated a column on African diasporic literature, and a founding board member and former Media & Communications Director for the Kimbilio Center for African American Fiction.

Selected Publications and Projects


The Body Family, Haymarket Books, 2022.

her, Locked Horns Press, 2019.

The Leaving, part of the box set New Generation African Poets: Tatu, 2016.

Movement No. 1: Trains, dancing girl press, 2015.


Please Don't Kill My Black Son Please, Vintage Books (forthcoming 2023).

Essays, Literary & Cultural Criticism

“On Teaching While Black in the Time of COVID and Emboldened Racism,” Poets & Writers, February 2021

“Do Black Lives Matter to Westworld? On Television’s Racial Fantasies,” Los Angeles Review of Books, June 2020

“A Memoir Reflects on What Happens to the Fairest of Them All,” NPR, May 2020

Brown Album Centers on the Erasure of Race in American Culture,” NPR, May 2020

Post-Colonial Love Poem Empowers Native Voice Within A Legacy of Violence,” NPR, March 2020

“When I Was White Looks at the Formation of Race and Identity,” NPR, July 2019

“Michelle Obama’s Becoming is Every Amazing Thing You Thought It Would Be,” The Root, November 2018

“On Boyhood,”  Tahoma Literary Review, Issue 13, November 2018

“Serena, Kamala, and the Fear of the Outspoken Woman,” Dame Magazine, September 2018

“The Realities of Parenting A Black Son,” Dame Magazine, May 2018

Dispatches from Rape Culture,” Anomaly, February 2018

“My Sister the Serial Killer’s Bloody Feminism,” The AV Club, August 2018

 “Nicole Sealey is No ‘Ordinary Beast’ (or Poet)” Shondaland, April 2018

“Books By Black Authors to Look Forward to in 2018,” The Root, January 2018

“Best Books By Black Authors of 2017,” The Root, December 2017

“What is Said,” All the Women in My Family Sing, November 2017

“The Animal in the Yard,” Creative Nonfiction MagazineAugust 2017

“The Best Books by Black Authors Published in 2016,” The Root, December 2016

“In ‘They Can’t Kill Us All’ Journalist Weslery Lowery Captures the Birth of a Movement,” The Root, November 2016

“In Colson Whitehead’s Imaginative The Underground Railroad, the Train to Freedom is Real,” The Root, October 2016

“The Story of 10 Young People Killed in a Day Should Make You Rethink Gun Culture in America,” The Root, October 2016

Hidden Figures: Meet the Black Female Math Geniuses Who Helped Win the Space Race,” The Root, September 2016

“Luvvie Ajayi is Only Judging You Because She Wants You to Do Better,” The Root, August 2016

“Black Lotus is A Woman’s Search for Racial Identity in a Racist World,” The Root, August 2016

“A Black Man’s Coming of Age in the Age of Obama: On Invisible Man, Got the World’s Always Watching: A Young Black Man’s Journey into Manhood by Mychal Denzel Smith,” The Root, August 2016

“On Chris Abani: The Middle Class View of Africa is a Problem,” The Guardian, July 2016

Insurrections: A Short Story Collection Hits All the Right Notes,” The Root, July 2016

The Fire This Time: Anthology Features New Generation of Writers Speaking Out on Race,” The Root, July 2016

“Discovery of Book Published By Black Woman in 1891 Sheds Light on 19th Century Novels By Black Americans,” The Root, June 2016

“15 New Books By Black Authors to Dive Into This Summer,” The Root, June 2016

“Book Review: Terri McMillan Writes What Breaks Her Heart,” The Root, June 2016

“Rachel Howzell Hall Crafts A New Type of Hero in Her Detective Mysteries,” The Root, May 2016

“11 Summer Must-Reads for Young Readers,” The Root, May 2016

“In Search of the Truth About James Brown,” The Root, May 2016

“In A Kafkaesque Turn A Black Man Wakes Up White, Except for His Blackass,” The Root, April 2016

“On Helen Oyeyemi’s What is Not Yours Is Not Yours,” The Root, March 2016

“And After Many Days: A New Nigerian Novelist Publishes a Highly Anticipated Debut Work,” The Root, February 2016

“Brown is the New White: the Changing Demographics of American Politics,” The Root, January 2016

“Books by Black Authors to Look Forward to in 2016,” The Root, February 2016

Courses Regularly Taught

Intro to Creative Writing: Poetry

Intermediate Creative Writing: Poetry

Intro to Women's Literature

Intro to African Literature

Advanced Poetry Workshop

Graduate Workshop in Creative Writing

African Women Writers


M.F.A., New York University
Creative Writing

B.S., Northwestern University
Film and Media Studies and Creative Writing

Areas of Interest

Creative Writing/Poetry

Creative Nonfiction/Essay

African and African Diasporic Literature

African American Literature

Women's and Gender Studies

Literary & Cultural Criticism