Aminatta Forna is a novelist, memoirist and essayist. She was born in Scotland and raised between Sierra Leone and the United Kingdom. Her novels are The Hired Man, The Memory of Love and Ancestor Stone. In 2002 she published a memoir of her dissident father and Sierra Leone, The Devil that Danced on the Water. All her books have won or been nominated for awards. Aminatta held the post of Professor of Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and was Sterling Brown Distinguished Visiting Professor at Williams College, MA, in 2011 and 2013.
The Lannan Foundation Chair is a visiting position at Georgetown to be held by a distinguished writer and public intellectual from the United States or overseas. Providing intellectual steerage during his or her tenure, the Foundation Chair lends visibility, focusing energy, and imaginative scope to the programs on offer. In any given year, the holder convenes significant public events in accord with his or her interests; and teaches in the undergraduate or graduate curriculum.