“I had forgotten this chant that was once mine, given me by my mother, who may not have known its power to remind. She said I would grow up a wife and a slave, but she taught me the song of the warrior woman, Fa Mu Lan. I would have to grow up a warrior woman.”
—Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts
Join us for a marathon reading featuring a powerhouse collective of Asian American women. In the aftermath of the horrific murders in Atlanta, GA, we offer this space as one for grieving, healing, and empowering. During a time marked by tragedy, anger, and loss, we look to our artistry to find and celebrate the resilience and brilliance of each and every woman warrior.
TUNE IN FOR READINGS BY:
Hala Alyan | Gina Apostol | Tina Cane | Jennifer Chang | Tina Chang | Victoria Chang | Cathy Linh Che | Marilyn Chin | Christina Chiu | Susan Choi | Mai Der Vang | Tarfia Faizullah | Monica Ferrell | Sarah Gambito | Kimiko Hahn | Nathalie Handal | Maxine Hong Kingston | Emily Jungmin Yoon | E. J. Koh | Eugenia Leigh | Muriel Leung | Marie Myung-Ok Lee | Aimee Nezhukumatathil | Wang Ping | Paisley Rekdal | Brynn Saito | Purvi Shah | Brenda Shaughnessy | Monica Sok | Adrienne Su | Adeeba Talukder | Jia Tolentino | Barbara Tran | Monique Truong | Sally Wen Mao | Jane Wong | Jenny Xie | Ishle Yi Park | Monica Youn | Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai | C Pam Zhang
This event is presented in collaboration and partnership with Brooklyn Poet Laureate Tina Chang and the PEN America Literary Action Coalition.
Hala Alyan is the author of the novel Salt Houses, winner of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize and the Arab American Book Award and a finalist for the Chautauqua Prize, as well as the recently published novel The Arsonists’ City and four award-winning collections of poetry, most recently The Twenty-Ninth Year. Her work has been published by The New Yorker, the Academy of American Poets, LitHub,the New York Times Book Review, and Guernica. She lives in Brooklyn, where she works as a clinical psychologist.
Gina Apostol’s fourth novel, Insurrecto, was named by Publishers’ Weekly one of the Ten Best Books of 2018, an Editor’s Choice of the NYT, and shortlisted for the Dayton Prize. Her most recent work uses her research on the Philippine-American War to cast a lens on our contemporary times. She lives in New York City and western Massachusetts and grew up in Tacloban, Leyte, in the Philippines.
Born and raised in New York City, Tina Cane serves as the Poet Laureate of Rhode Island where she is the founder and director of Writers-in-the-Schools, RI. Her poems and translations have appeared in numerous publications, including The Literary Review, Spinning Jenny, Tupelo Quarterly, Jubliat and The Common. She also co-produces, with Atticus Allen, the podcast, Poetry Dose. Cane is the author of The Fifth Thought (Other Painters Press, 2008), Dear Elena: Letters for Elena Ferrante, poems with art by Esther Solondz (Skillman Avenue Press, 2016), Once More With Feeling (Veliz Books, 2017)and Body of Work (Veliz Books, 2019. In 2016, Tina received the Fellowship Merit Award in Poetry, from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. She is also a 2020 Poet Laureate Fellow with the Academy of American Poets and the creator/curator of the distance reading series, Poetry is Bread.
Jennifer Chang is the author of The History of Anonymity and Some Say the Lark, which won the 2018 William Carlos William Award. Her poems are forthcoming in The Believer, Georgia Review, A Public Space, and Yale Review. She lives in Washington, DC with her family.
Tina Chang, Brooklyn Poet Laureate, is the author of Half-Lit Houses, Of Gods & Strangers, and the critically acclaimed Hybrida (W.W. Norton, 2019). She is also co-editor of the Norton anthology Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East, Asia, and Beyond. Her poems have been published in journals such as American Poet, McSweeney’s, The New York Times, and Ploughshares. She has received awards from the Academy of American Poets, the New York Foundation for the Arts, Poets & Writers, among others. She is a professor and the Director of Creative Writing at Binghamton University.
Victoria Chang’s poetry books include OBIT, Barbie Chang, The Boss, Salvinia Molesta, and Circle. Her children’s books include Is Mommy?, illustrated by Marla Frazee, and Love, Love, a middle grade novel. She lives in Los Angeles and serves as the program chair of Antioch’s low-residency MFA program.
Marilyn Chin’s works have become Asian American classics and are taught internationally. Her books include– A PORTRAIT OF THE SELF AS NATION, HARD LOVE PROVINCE, RHAPSODY IN PLAIN YELLOW, and THE PHOENIX GONE, THE TERRACE EMPTY. Her wild girl fiction book is called REVENGE OF THE MOONCAKE VIXEN. She has won numerous awards, including the Ruth Lilly Prize for lifetime achievement in poetry, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, the United States Artist Foundation Award, the Radcliffe Institute Fellowship at Harvard, the Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship, two NEAs, the Stegner Fellowship, the PEN/Josephine Miles Award, five Pushcart Prizes, a Fulbright to Taiwan, a Lannan Award and others.She is featured in major anthologies, including The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry, The Penguin Anthology of 20thCentury American Poetry, and the PBS series Poetry in America. She serves as Professor Emerita of San Diego State University and as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.
Christina Chiu is the grand-prize winner of the James Alan McPherson Award for her novel, Beauty. She is also author of Troublemaker and Other Saints, published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons. Her stories have won awards and honorable mention in literary contests such as Playboy, Glimmer Train, New Millennium, New York Stories, World Wide Writers, Explorations, and El Dorado Writers’ Guild. She curates and co-hosts the Pen Parentis Literary Salons in New York City.
Susan Choi is the author of five novels, most recently Trust Exercise, which received the 2019 National Book Award for fiction. She has also received the Asian-American Literary Award for fiction, the PEN/W.G. Sebald Award, a Lamba Literary award, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, and has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the PEN/Faulkner Award. In 2019 she published her first book for children, Camp Tiger. She teaches fiction writing at Yale and lives in Brooklyn.
MAI DER VANG
Mai Der Vang is the author of two poetry collections, Yellow Rain (forthcoming Graywolf Press, 2021), and Afterland (Graywolf Press, 2017), winner of the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets, longlisted for the National Book Award in Poetry, and a finalist for the Kate Tufts Discovery Award. The recipient of a Lannan Literary Fellowship, she served as a Visiting Writer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She teaches in the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Fresno State.
Tarfia Faizullah was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Bangladeshi immigrants and raised in Texas. Tarfia is the author of two poetry collections, Registers of Illuminated Villages (Graywolf, 2018) and Seam (SIU, 2014). Tarfia’s writing has appeared widely in the US and abroad.
Monica Ferrell was born in New Delhi, India in 1975. She is the author of three books of fiction and poetry, most recently the collection You Darling Thing (Four Way, 2018), a finalist for the Kingsley Tufts Award and Believer Book Award in Poetry. Her novel The Answer Is Always Yes (Dial Press/Random House) was named one of Booklist’s Top Ten Debut Novels of the Year and a Borders Original Voices selection. Her first collection of poems, Beasts for the Chase, was a finalist for the Asian American Writers Workshop Prize in Poetry and won the Sarabande Books Kathryn A. Morton Prize. She has been recognized with residencies at the Civitella Ranieri Foundation and the MacDowell Colony, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship, and a Discovery/The Nation Prize. She has taught fiction and poetry for the MFA programs at Columbia University and Bennington College, and is Professor of Creative Writing at Purchase College (SUNY).
Sarah Gambito is Professor of English / Director of Creative Writing at Fordham University and co-founder of Kundiman, a non-profit organization serving writers and readers of Asian American literature.
Kimiko Hahn’s latest collection, Foreign Bodies, is as much about the Asian body that is always viewed as foreign, as it is about objects and science. She is a distinguished professor in the MFA Program in Creative Writing and Literary Translation, Queens College, CUNY.
MAXINE HONG KINGSTON
Maxine Hong Kingston is Emerita Senior Lecturer for Creative Writing at the University of California, Berkeley. For her memoirs, fiction, and poetry, The Fifth Book of Peace, The Woman Warrior, China Men, Tripmaster Monkey, I Love a Broad Margin to My Life, and Hawai’i One Summer, she has earned numerous awards, among them the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction, the PEN West Award for Fiction, and an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature. She was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Clinton, and the National Medal of Arts by President Obama. She is a “Living Treasure of Hawai’i.”
EMILY JUNGMIN YOON
Emily Jungmin Yoon is the author of A Cruelty Special to Our Species (Ecco | HarperCollins 2018), winner of the 2019 Devil’s Kitchen Reading Award and finalist for the 2020 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, and Ordinary Misfortunes (Tupelo Press, 2017), winner of the Sunken Garden Chapbook Prize. She has also translated and edited a chapbook of poems, Against Healing: Nine Korean Poets (Tilted Axis, 2019). She is the Poetry Editor for The Margins, the literary magazine of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, and a PhD candidate in Korean literature at the University of Chicago.
E J KOH
E J Koh is the author of the memoir The Magical Language of Others (Tin House Books, 2020), winner of the Pacific Northwest Book Award, and the poetry collection A Lesser Love (Louisiana State University Press, 2017), winner of the Pleiades Press Editors Prize for Poetry. Her co-translation of Yi Won’s The World’s Lightest Motorcycle is forthcoming from Zephyr Press. Her poems, translations, and stories have appeared in Boston Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Slate, and World Literature Today. Koh is the recipient of fellowships from the American Literary Translators Association, Kundiman, and MacDowell. Koh earned her MFA at Columbia University in New York for Creative Writing and Literary Translation. She is a PhD candidate at the University of Washington in Seattle for English Language and Literature on Korean and Korean American literature, history, and film.
Muriel Leung is the author of Imagine Us, The Swarm, forthcoming from Nightboat Books and Bone Confetti, winner of the 2015 Noemi Press Book Award. A Pushcart Prize nominated writer, her writing can be found in The Baffler, Cream City Review, Gulf Coast, The Collagist, Fairy Tale Review, and others. She is a recipient of fellowships to Kundiman, VONA/Voices Workshop and the Community of Writers. She is the Poetry Co-Editor of Apogee Journal. She also co-hosts The Blood-Jet Writing Hour podcast with Rachelle Cruz and MT Vallarta. She is a member of Miresa Collective, a feminist speakers bureau. An Andrew W. Mellon Humanities in a Digital World Fellow, she is completing her PhD in Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Southern California. She is from Queens, NY.
CATHY LINH CHE
Cathy Linh Che is the author of Split. She is working on two books about her parents’ experiences as Vietnam War refugees who were cast as extras in Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now.
MARIE MYUNG-OK LEE
Marie Myung-Ok Lee’s novel, The Evening Hero, is forthcoming with Simon & Schuster, and her young adult novel, Finding My Voice, has just been re-released by Soho Press. Her stories and essays have been published in The Atlantic, The New York Times, Slate, Salon, Guernica, Joyland The Paris Review, The Guardian, The Nation, and the New York Times Book Review, and Smithsonian Magazine. Lee is a cofounder and former board president of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop and teaches in fiction at Columbia where she is Writer in Residence.
Aimee Nezhukumatathil is the author of World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments, finalist for the Kirkus Prize in non-fiction, and recently named the Barnes and Noble Book of the Year. She is also the author of four books of poetry, and is poetry editor of SIERRA, the national magazine of the Sierra Club. Awards for her writing include a fellowship from the Mississippi Arts Council, Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for poetry, National Endowment of the Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. She is professor of English and Creative Writing in the University of Mississippi’s MFA program.
Wang Ping is a poet, writer, photographer, performance and multimedia artist. Her publications have been translated into multiple languages and include poetry, short stories, novels, cultural studies, and children’s stories. Her multimedia exhibitions address global themes of industrialization, the environment, interdependency, and the people. She is the recipient of numerous awards, a professor of English, and founder of the Kinship of Rivers project.
Paisley Rekdal is the author of four books of nonfiction and six books of poems. Her most recent book of poetry is, Nightingale, and a new book of nonfiction, Appropriate: A Provocation, was published W.W. Norton in 2021. Her poetry has been included in multiple editions of The Best American Poetry series, and she was guest editor for Best American Poetry 2020. She is Utah’s poet laureate.
Brynn Saito is the author of two books of poetry, Power Made Us Swoon (2016) and The Palace of Contemplating Departure (2013), winner of the Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press and a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. She’s the curator of an online project/chapbook, Dear—, and she co-authored with Traci Brimhall the poetry chapbooks Bright Power, Dark Peace (Diode Editions, 2016) and Wild Recovery, published in Four Quartets: Poetry in the Pandemic (Tupelo Press, 2020). Her work and writing have appeared in Vogue, the New York Times, and American Poetry Review. In 2017, Brynn co-founded Yonsei Memory Project; she has received support from Densho, Hedgebrook, Santa Fe Arts Institute, and the California State Library’s Civil Liberties Public Education Program grant. Brynn is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and English at California State University, Fresno, located on Yokuts land.
Purvi Shah’s favorite art practices are her sparkly eyeshadow, raucous laughter, and seeking justice. She won the inaugural SONY South Asian Social Service Excellence Award for her leadership fighting violence against women. Her new book, Miracle Marks, explores women, the sacred, and gender & racial equity. With artist Anjali Deshmukh, she creates interactive art at https://circlefor.com/. Their participatory project, Missed Fortunes, documented experiences, celebrations, and pandemic rituals to create poetry and visual art, connection, and a community archive for healing. You can see and purchase the art prints at https://tiny.one/circlefor. Find more @PurviPoets.
Brenda Shaughnessy is the author of five poetry books, including The Octopus Museum, a 2019 New York Times Notable Book. She is Professor of English at Rutgers University-Newark and lives in New Jersey with her family.
Monica Sok is a Khmer poet and the daughter of refugees. She is the author of A Nail the Evening Hangs On (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). She has received fellowships from the Hedgebrook, Kundiman, MacDowell, National Endowment for the Arts, and others. Sok is a Jones Lecturer at Stanford University and teaches poetry to Southeast Asian youths at the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants in Oakland, California.
Adrienne Su is the author of five books of poems: Peach State (Pitt, 2021), Living Quarters (Manic D Press, 2015), Having None of It (Manic D, 2009), Sanctuary (Manic D, 2006), and Middle Kingdom (Alice James Books, 1997). Her work has been recognized by fellowships from the Barbara Deming Fund and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as five appearances in Best American Poetry. She lives in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, where she is professor of creative writing and poet-in-residence at Dickinson College.
Adeeba Shahid Talukder is a Pakistani American poet, translator, and singer. She is the author of What Is Not Beautiful (Glass Poetry Press, 2018) and her debut collection, Shahr-e-jaanaan: The City of the Beloved (Tupelo Press, 2020), is a winner of the Kundiman Poetry Prize. Her poetry has appeared in Poem-A-Day, Glass, Gulf Coast, Meridian, The Aleph Review, and The Margins, and her translations in PBS Frontline and Words Without Borders. Adeeba holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan and an Emerging Poets fellowship from Poets House.
Jia Tolentino is a staff writer at the New Yorker and the author of the essay collection Trick Mirror.
Barbara Tran’s writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Cincinnati Review, The Paris Review, Conjunctions,and Ploughshares. A Pushcart Prize-winner, Barbara is the recipient of a MacDowell Freund Fellowship and Lannan Foundation Writer’s Residency. Current projects include a collaborative video with She Who Has No Master(s). Barbara is indebted to Hedgebrook, and to the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council for essential support.
Monique Truong is the Vietnamese American author of three novels: The Book of Salt, Bitter in the Mouth, and The Sweetest Fruits. Recipient of a New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Prize, PEN/Robert W. Bingham Fellowship, Hodder Fellowship, U.S.-Japan Creative Artists Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, and John Gardner Fiction Book Award, she is a former refugee, an essayist, lyricist/librettist, avid eater, and intellectual property attorney (more or less in this order). She’s based now in Brooklyn, New York.
Jenny Xie is the author of Eye Level, and a faculty member at Bard College.
SALLY WEN MAO
Sally Wen Mao is the author of two collections of poetry, Oculus (Graywolf Press, 2019), a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and Mad Honey Symposium (Alice James Books, 2014). The recipient of a Pushcart Prize and an NEA fellowship, she was recently a Cullman Fellow at the New York Public Library and a Shearing Fellow at the Black Mountain Institute. Her poetry and prose have appeared in The Best American Poetry, The Paris Review, Poetry, Harpers Bazaar, The Kenyon Review, Guernica, and A Public Space, among others.
Jane Wong is the author of Overpour (Action Books, 2016) and How to Not Be Afraid of Everything (Alice James, forthcoming in October 2021). She is an Associate Professor of Creative Writing at Western Washington University. Her website: https://janewongwriter.com/
ISHLE YI PARK
Ishle Yi Park aka LANI is a Korean American poet, singer, and mother living in Hawaii. She is the first woman to become Poet Laureate of Queens, New York, and her next novel~In~verse, Angel & Hannah, will be published by One World Random House this spring 2021. For more info and a free song, feel free to visit www.kehaulanimusic.com.
Monica Youn grew up in Houston, Texas. She is the author of Blackacre (Graywolf Press, 2016), winner of the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America; Ignatz (Four Way Books, 2010), a finalist for the 2010 National Book Award in poetry; and Barter (Graywolf Press, 2003).
C PAM ZHANG
Born in Beijing, C Pam Zhang is mostly an artifact of the United States. She is the author of How Much of These Hills Is Gold, winner of the Asian/Pacific Award for Literature, nominated for the Booker Prize, and a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award, the National Book Critics’ Circle John Leonard Prize, and a Lambda Literary Award. Zhang’s writing appears in Best American Short Stories, The Cut, McSweeney’s Quarterly, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. She is a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Honoree.