This October, join us for a celebratory reading with the 2020 Open City Fellows.
We’ll hear from Neighborhood Fellows Noah Flora, Soumya Shankar, Preeti Varathan, and Kate Zen, who have been documenting the pulse of metropolitan Asian America as it has being lived on the streets of New York right now; and our Muslim Communities fellow, Amir Khafagy, who has been writing on the city’s Muslim American and Arab American communities over the past year.
Don’t miss this chance to hear excerpts from some of the best local reporting and narrative nonfiction about communities of color in New York City, and the ways those communities have been affected during the global pandemic.
Moderated by Senior Editor at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Noel Pangilinan.
Noah Flora is a freelance reporter, culture writer and fact checker based in Queens, New York. They write, about politics, labor migration, mass movements, race and literature. Noah is affiliated with The Nation, Democracy Now! and The Progressive, and have previously freelanced for outlets like Foreign Affairs and Type Investigations. They graduated from The Ohio State University in 2014 in their hometown, Columbus, Ohio, and they received their M.A. in English Literature from Rutgers University in 2018, where they taught and studied for three years.
Amir Khafagy is a New York City-based journalist and an AAWW Open City Fellow for 2020. Born and raised in a working-class family in Jackson Heights, Queens, Amir has been involved in social justice movements for nearly a decade. He has contributed to such publications as Vice, Jacobin, CityLimits, Curbed, Truthout, CityLab, Gothamist and In These Times. Follow him on twitter @AmirKhafagy91.
Soumya Shankar is a politics and international affairs journalist focused on South Asia and the South Asian community in America. Her work, centered on electoral politics, conflict, migration and social movements has appeared in Foreign Policy, South China Morning Post, The Intercept, Religion News Service, The Caravan, The Hindu Businessline, among others. Shankar teaches journalism at Stony Brook University. She earned her Master’s degree from the Columbia Journalism School.
Preeti Varathan is a multimedia reporter, producer, and host. She most recently helmed the global video series Quartz News, a weekly show with Facebook. She has produced stories in Singapore, Mumbai, Caracas, Lagos, Paris, São Paulo, London, Montreal, LA, and New York. She produced and durected a documentary on endangered elephants in India. Her work has been nominated for the Gerald Loeb Award and a Webby. Preeti has a BA in Economics-Mathematics from Columbia University.
Kate Zen is a community organizer, artist, and software developer, living in Flushing, Queens. Born in Shanghai and raised in NYC, Kate has been organizing for social justice in the Asian-Pacific American community since age 15 for the Chinatown Literacy Project, of which she was a co-founder. She was also a former executive director of Chinatown Youth Initiatives. Kate is also interim director of Red Canary Song, a collective of Asian and migrant sex workers fighting for justice, safety, and labor rights for migrant massage parlor workers in Flushing and Sunset Park.