How is resistance possible when reality itself is obscured? In an era of "fake news" and more facts than anyone could hope to grasp, authoritarians rely on this uncertainty to consolidate their hold on power. Legendary journalist Raissa Robles joins us from the Philippines to share her new work, Marcos Martial Law: Never Again, which reappraises the era of Marcos and applies it lessons to what is unfolding today. Communications specialist for human rights advocacy and journalist Raad Rahman will share her research on state repression in Bangladesh, from the Rohingya refugees fleeing attacks in Myanmar to the persecution of LGBTQ Bangladeshis, and writer and translator Tenzin Dickie will discuss writing and translating work about Tibetans navigating the ongoing Chinese occupation. Moderated by AAWW’s Literary Editor Jeremy Tiang, our panel discusses the difficulty of telling stories that those in power would rather stay hidden.
RESERVE A SEAT!
$5 SUGGESTED DONATION | OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
Old Demons, New Deities: Twenty-One Short Stories from Tibet (OR Books, 2017) edited by Tenzin Dickie is the first English-language anthology of contemporary Tibetan fiction available in the West. The book collects 21 short stories by 16 writers in Tibet and the diaspora who write in Tibetan, English, and Chinese, creating a wide-ranging portrait of Tibetan writers who navigate occupation and exile. Tenzin’s writing has been published in Indian Literature, Apogee Journal, Tibetan Review, Himal SouthAsian and Cultural Anthropology. A 2014-2015 ALTA Fellow of the American Literary Translators’ Association, she holds an MFA from Columbia University and a BA from Harvard University. She is an editor at treasuryoflives.org, a biographical encyclopedia of significant figures from Tibet, Inner Asia, and the Himalayan Region.
Raad Rahman is a 2017 Open City Muslim Community fellow who writes about Muslim and immigrant communities in New York City and state repression in Bangladesh. Her June 2017 op-ed in the New York Times, “No Country for Bangladesh’s Gay Men,” follows the lack of justice for Xulhaz Mannan and Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy, two prominent LGBT activists in Bangladesh who were murdered by terrorists in 2016. She has written about politics, human rights and literature in VICE, the Guardian, the Paris Review, and more. In addition to writing, Raad has consulted on communications with human rights groups such as iProbono, UNICEF, and the International Center for Transitional Justice. Raad’s first novel, Framed Butterflies, was published by Bard College Press in 2005. She is currently working on a novel.
Celebrated Filipina journalist Raissa Robles’s new book Marcos Martial Law: Never Again: A Brief History of Torture and Atrocity Under the New Society, is a critical success in the Philippines, where it remains taboo to speak about torture and atrocities under Marcos and the growth of authoritarianism under President Rodrigo Duerte. Published in 2016, Marcos Martial Law is a finalist in the Philippines’s 2017 National Book Awards, and the winner of the International Award for Excellence in Journalism. Raissa is the senior Manila correspondent of the South China Morning Post and the publisher of the investigative newsblog of Philippine politics, RaissaRobles.com, which was judged “Best Society and Politics Blog in the Philippines” in 2015. Raissa’s reportage has also been published in the Times of London, The Mail Online, BBC Radio, and Reuters.
Jeremy Tiang is the AAWW's Asia Literary Editor. He is the author of State of Emergency (Epigram Books, 2017) and It Never Rains on National Day (shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize). Jeremy is also a playwright, and has translated more than ten books from Chinese, including novels by Chan Ho-Kei, Zhang Yueran, Su Wei-chen and Yeng Pway Ngon. He is the recipient of a PEN/ Heim Grant, an NEA Literary Translation Fellowship, and a Henry Luce Foundation Fellowship.
The Transpacific Literary Project is funded by the Henry Luce Foundation.
/\ /\ \/\/ \/\/..
If you’re in the Halloween spirit for some bewitching poetry, come celebrate the launch of Jess Rizkallah’s new book of poems, themagic my body becomes. She will be joined by poets Marwa Helal, Aria Aber, and Melissa Lozada-Oliva, all of whom write into different sorts of magics: the body, family, immigration, language, community, love, and loss. In the magic my body becomes, Jess Rizkallah explores the complexities of being too Arab for America and too American for her Lebanese elders weaving in family history, civil war and trauma, religion, and memories of Lebanon. In a forceful yet tender reclaiming of the body, she speaks out against the sexualisation and shame to which women are subjected, from both sides of her identity.
RESERVE A SEAT!
$5 SUGGESTED DONATION | OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
Winner of the 2017 Etel Adnan Poetry Prize, Jess Rizkallah seeks a vernacular for the inescapable middle ground of being Arab American in her debut poetry collection, the magic my body becomes (University of Arkansas Press, 2017). Safia Elhillo writes, “I cannot stress enough how important it feels, as children of parents whose worlds had to end so ours could begin, to have poets like Jess giving voice to the doubled identities we carry.” Rizkallah is a Lebanese-American writer and illustrator living between Boston and New York City. A recent graduate from Lesley University with a BA in English, Creative Writing, and Illustration and currently pursuing an MFA in poetry at New York University, as well as founder and editor at Pizza Pi Press and Maps for Teeth. Check out her poem, “where are we headed” in The Margins.
Marwa Helal is a poet and journalist. Her work appears in Apogee, Hyperallergic, the Offing, Poets & Writers, the Recluse, Winter Tangerine and elsewhere. She is the author of I AM MADE TO LEAVE I AM MADE TO RETURN (No, Dear/Small Anchor Press, 2017) and Invasive species (Nightboat Books, 2019). Helal is the winner of BOMB Magazine’s Biennial 2016 Poetry Contest and has been awarded fellowships from Poets House, Brooklyn Poets, and Cave Canem. Born in Al Mansurah, Egypt, Helal currently lives and teaches in Brooklyn, New York. She received her MFA in creative nonfiction from The New School and her BA in journalism and international studies from Ohio Wesleyan University. Watch Marwa read “An Ode to DJ Khaled” on AAWW TV.
Aria Aber was born to Afghan parents in Munster, Germany. After finishing school, she relocated to London, where she studied English Literature at Goldsmiths College, University of London and currently lives in New York City to pursue her MFA in poetry as a Writers in Public Schools fellow at NYU. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming from The Poetry Review, Best British Poetry 2015, Muzzle Magazine, Prelude, Lighthouse, Reservoir, decomP, and many others. She has been awarded the New Writing Prize in Poetry from Wasafiri, as well as fellowships from Kundiman and Dickinson House. Check out Aria’s poem, “Azalea Azalea,” in The Margins.
Melissa Lozada-Oliva is a spoken word poet & educator living in Boston whose fierceness and charm have made her a near-instant slam poetry phenomenon. She is a current National Poetry Slam Champion, a Brenda Moosey Video Slam Champion, and the author of the chapbook Plastic Pájaros. Her poem "Like Totally Whatever" scored the highest at the National Poetry Slam finals, propelling her team to victory and herself into the national spotlight, appearing on Upworthy, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, and countless other media outlets. Melissa's ability to speak truth to power as an unapologetically feminist Latina comes as a breath of fresh air to audiences perhaps expecting the "same old slam poetry". Blending power, warmth, and flat-out hilarity, Melissa leaves audiences not only excited about changing the world, but excited about being a part of that change. Watch Melissa perform “Like Totally Whatever” at the National Poetry Slam here.
/\ /\ \/\/ \/\/..
Five Sessions, 2.5 hours each (6-8:30pm)
Tuesdays October 31st, November 7th, November 14th, November 21st, November 28th
Fees & Payment Options: $350 General / $320 AAWW Members (Join the Fanclub!)
Full payment due before first class. Maximum of twenty students.
Why You Should Take This Class: This workshop lives in the terrifying space between the aspirational (dreams, wishes) and the practical (goals, time). Collectively, we will map our visions, examine our roadblocks and design honest work practices that sustain us for many long hauls. Along the way, participants will start and finish many-a-project, and ready ourselves to tackle our biggest ambitions. We’ll get it done, whatever it is.
Class Description: “Starting’ and ‘finishing” are muscles; together we will train them. This five-session workshop will include improv, design, and writing exercises, and is open to participants of any creative practice.
REGISTER HERE“From my youth on, my personal motto has been the old Latin tag, Festina lente, hurry slowly.”
— Italo CalvinoJanani Balasubramanian is a writer of speculative fiction whose work has been presented at more than 160 stages across North America and Europe, including The Public Theater, MOMA, Red Bull Arts, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Most recently, Janani premiered Heisenberg (an audio augmented reality game on uncertainty and chaos) at the New York High Line. Janani is currently working on Sleeper, a dystopian trilogy about sleep and physics. See more at sleepertrilogy.com.
Questions? Contact Tiffany Le at firstname.lastname@example.org
/\ /\ \/\/ \/\/..