An Evening of Poetry


Thursday, June 19, 2008 7:00pm
Asian American Writers' Workshop
16 West 32nd Street, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10001

Media Gallery

This event is open to the public; $5 donation is suggested.

Nobel Prize-nominated poet Bei Daoreads with Jennifer Chang, whose debut collection, The History of Anonymity (University of Georgia Press, 2008), explores a nocturnal world of childhood and myth.

Often seen as the preeminent Chinese poet of his generation,Bei Dao was born in Beijing in 1949. In 1978, he co-founded the literary journal Today (Jintian) and the "Misty Poets" movement, whose avant-garde style challenged the social realist style favored by the Communist literary establishment. His poem The Answer has been likened to a Chinese democracy movement's equivalent of Blowin' in the Wind and was chanted at the Tiananmen Square protests. Bei Dao has lived in England, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, France, and the United States since 1987. He has won numerous awards, including Jeanette Schocken Literary Prize from Bremerhaven, Germany (2005), International Poetry Argana Award from the House of Poetry in Morocco (2002), Tucholsky Prize from Swedish PEN (1990). He is an honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Jennifer Chang's poems have appeared in New England Review, The New Republic, The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Boston Review and the anthologies Best New Poets 2005(Samovar Press and Meridian, 2005) and Asian American Poetry: The Next Generation (University of Illinois Press, 2004). Her new collection, The History of Anonymity, tours a craggy, translucent landscape of moonlit memories and childhood memories, leading poet Arthur Sze to describe it as "spare yet sinuous, haunted, visionary." Chang co-chairs the advisory board of Kundiman, a non-profit organization that promotes Asian American poetry.

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