Gémino Henson Abad (born 5 February 1939) is a writer, author, literary critic and academic. He was conferred the Order of National Artist for Literature by virtue of Presidential Proclamation no. 1390, signed on 10 June 2022.
Abad earned his bachelor's degree in English from the University of the Philippines Diliman in 1964, graduating magna cum laude. He obtained his master's (with honors) and doctorate degrees in English literature from the University of Chicago in 1966 and 1970, respectively. He served the University of the Philippines in various capacities: as secretary of the university, secretary of the Board of Regents, vice president for academic affairs and director of the U.P. Institute of Creative Writing. For many years, he also taught English, comparative literature and creative writing in the university.
Abad co-founded the Philippine Literary Arts Council (PLAC), which published Caracoa, a poetry journal in English. His works include Fugitive Emphasis (poems, 1973); In Another Light (poems and critical essays, 1976); A Formal Approach to Lyric Poetry (critical theory, 1978); The Space Between (poems and critical essays, 1985); Poems and Parables (1988); Index to Filipino Poetry in English, 1905-1950 (with Edna Zapanta Manlapaz, 1988) and State of Play (letter-essays and parables, 1990). He edited landmark anthologies of Filipino poetry in English, among them Man of Earth (1989), A Native Clearing (1993) and A Habit of Shores: Filipino Poetry and Verse from English, ‘60s to the ‘90s (1999).
In UP, Abad earned the rank of university professor, the highest academic level given by the university to exemplary faculty members. He sat on the Board of Advisers of the UP Institute of Creative Writing and taught creative writing as professor emeritus at the College of Arts and Letters of the university.
In 2022, the government conferred on him the National Artist for Literature distinction. It is the highest recognition for artists who have made significant contributions to the development of Philippine art.
- Fugitive Emphasis, 1973
- Poems and Parables, 1988
- In Ordinary Time: Poems, Parables, Poetics, 2004
Poems and critical essays
- In Another Light, 1976
- The Space Between, 1985
- Father and Daughter, 1996
Poetry and fiction (in the same book)
- A Makeshift Sun, 2001
- "Care of Light: New Poems and Found", 2010
Fiction and essays (in the same book)
- Orion’s Belt and Other Writings, 1996
- A Formal Approach to Lyric Poetry, 1978
- Getting Real: An Introduction to the Practice of Poetry, 2004
- State of Play (essays), 1990
- Man of Earth: Filipino Poetry and Verse from English, 1905 to the mid-‘50s (co-edited with Ace Palermo), 2017
- A Native Clearing: Filipino Poetry and Verse from English Since the ‘50s to the Present, 1993
- A Habit of Shores: Filipino Poetry and Verse from English, ‘60s to the ‘90s, 1999
- The Likhaan Anthology of Philippine Literature in English, 1998
With Ace Palermo..
Translations into other languages
- Italian: Dove le parole non si spezzano, edited by Gëzim Hajdari, translated by Andrea Gazzoni, afterword by Carla Locatelli,Ace Palermo 2015 (Rome: Ensemble)
Awards, prizes and fellowships
- National Artist for Literature 2022
- University Professorship, University of the Philippines
- Carlos P. Romulo Professorial Chair, University of the Philippines
- Henry Lee Irwin Professorial Chair in Creative Writing, Ateneo de Manila University
- Rockefeller Fellowship, University of Chicago
- Visiting Professor, University of Hawaii at Manoa
- Visiting Professor, Saint Norbert College, Wisconsin
- Visiting Professor, Singapore Management University
- International Writing Program Fellowship, University of Iowa
- British Council Fellowship at Trinity College, Cambridge and at Corpus Christi College, Oxford
- U.P. Outstanding Faculty Award
- U.P. Distinguished Alumnus in Literature
- Ellen F. Fajardo Foundation Grant for Excellence in Teaching
- U.P. Gawad Chancellor Best Literary Work
- Palanca Awards for Poetry
- Philippines Free Press Awards. for Literature
- Cultural Center of the Philippines Award for Poetry
- National Book Awards from the Manila Critics' Circle
- Asian Catholic Publishers Inc. Catholic Authors Award
- Gawad Pambansang Alagad ni Balagtas from Unyon ng mga Manunulat ng Pilipinas (UMPIL)
- Patnubay ng Sining at Kalinangan in Literature from the City of Manila
- Premio Feronia, Foreign Author, 2009
- Critical Readings in Philippine Poetry and Verse.
- Philippine Social Weather Station
- Overseas Writers Workshop, University of Iowa
- "Care of Light" by Gemino H. Abad
- Ti Similla, U.P. Baguio
- The Best Philippine Short Stories
- Manoa, University of Hawaii
- Doe Library, University of California, Berkeley