In my right hand, a monsoon to rain the year away / In my left, a poem to wash yourself clean.
When the dead depart, it’s the living who are left behind, fractured beyond recognition
To fix myself, it seems, is to become a ghost of myself.
‘These were / all the gold coins that he laid by in a life of poverty, / saved up in the vault of his mind’
Suppressed sexual violence in the name of revolution lay in the abyss of our consciousness.
One person’s ancestor is another person’s ghost—it’s all a matter of perspective.
The author of How I Became a North Korean speaks about the power of fiction to give clarity to the world.
‘Wanting privacy in a police state was sheer stupidity’—to tell the stories of her family in China without the threat of censorship, Yang Huang had to look beyond Mandarin.
With Canto-pop star Denise Ho and bookseller-turned-whistleblower Lam Wing-Kee, Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement is putting the old tactic of boycotts to new use
Writers respond to Trillin’s doggerel “Have They Run Out of Provinces Yet?”
Who owns public space? Young South Asian women in Brooklyn struggle with the culture that dictates that women have no business outside the home.
In Huan Hsu’s The Porcelain Thief, the search for a family treasure unearths the spell of nostalgia
‘Last week some of the other kids dug a hole to China in the dirt lot behind the Purtells’ house. Down at the end of Locust Street, that swampy neverland that reeked of skunk cabbage.’
The writer discusses China before and since Tiananmen, abandoned enemy spies, and how solidarity will build a nation.
A group of artists, writers, and musicians led by Kelly Tsai is teaming up to put on a multi-media performance based on the work of Ai Weiwei
What time and place can call you home? are you an epiphany? a question? / Is it something / you only pretended to welcome, something you’ve come to regret?
Parkway itself will lose its luster, its sense of magic ascendance. And I will begin my struggle to understand this twin heritage—luminous freedom and oppressive grievance.
Each of us has a moment, a shiny soap bubble of memory that contains our past and predicts our future.
In response to the Tiananmen Square protests and crackdown of 1989, the Asian American Arts Centre organized a landmark exhibition of artworks. To commemorate the protest’s 25th anniversary, The Margins partnered with Creative Time Reports to interview the artists involved.
Where the “Yellow Peril incarnate” meets one novelist’s depictions of China and its diaspora in the early 20th century
An interview with the exiled Chinese poet on writing from prison, false patriotism, and the responsibility of intellectuals
A photojournalist returns to his ancestral home to capture what is left of a long history of migration between China and the US.
An interview with journalist Hsiao-Hung Pai, whose book Scattered Sand tells the stories of Chinese migrant workers—direct from their mouths.
Orhan Pamuk and Mo Yan, Noble Prize winners in Literature, were both writers-in-residence at the prestigious International Writing Program. An interview with IWP’s current director about one of the program’s founders, the remarkable Chinese novelist Hualing Nieh.
An alarming new documentary blames China for America’s woes.
Poet and journalist Luis H. Francia journeys through Japan, bearing witness to the devastation wrought by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami—and to the creativity arising from these very areas.
A new documentary about the famed Chinese artist and dissident focuses on his activism more than it does his art.
Compared to China’s national university entrance exam, the gaokao (lit., “test you must ace or work as a menial laborer for the rest of your life”), the SATs are a stroll in the park.
But the media bungles it up with an overly simplistic “Red China” narrative.
A photo essay.