Forum: On Teaching Asian American Literature Outside the U.S.

In late April of 2012 I attended the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS) Conference in San Jose, California, catching a number of lively panels and serving on a roundtable on poet Shailja Patel’s  Migritude. Sadly I had to take an early flight home and missed a panel of particular interest, entitled “Teaching Asian [Continue Reading...]

Forum: Generations of Asian American Writers

Forum The notion of an “Asian American” literature emerged at the end of the 1960s and the start of the 1970s, when members of a generation just reaching their adulthood began to connect their commitment to left politics with creative expression.   A few short decades later, we find ourselves witnessing a flowering of literature [Continue Reading...]

Forum: How has September 11th changed literature?

Forum Although September 11th-oriented literary production has been prodigious, literature somehow remains for many an ancillary project at best, at worst an elitist aesthetic endeavor.   How might we understand literature as part and parcel of the on-the-ground urgencies of September 11th and its aftermath?   How might literature deepen our understanding of the event [Continue Reading...]

Forum: What did September 11th do to the concept of “Asian America”?

Forum What did September 11th do to the concept of “Asian America”?  Do you see a schism between “Asian America” and “Desi America,” and a new alignment between South Asian/Arab/Middle Eastern/Muslim Americans?  What tensions now exist between and within these various communities? Deepa Iyer In 1998, Lavina Shankar and Rajini Srikanth edited a book that [Continue Reading...]

Forum: 9/11 as Rupture

Forum Don DeLillo once famously called JFK’s assassination “the seven seconds that broke the back of the American century.”   September 11, 2001 is perhaps similar to that moment not in kind but in magnitude and reach, and in our sprawling attempts to make sense of it.   So what, ten years after, can we [Continue Reading...]

Forum: What does the 2010 Census tell us about representation and identity?

Forum According to the 2000 census, the first to include the option of checking multiple race boxes, nearly seven million Americans identify as multiracial. One in six babies born in Seattle, Sacramento, and San Antonio is multiracial. Now the 2010 census is here. One imagines the census-taker, going steadily from door to door, perhaps surprised [Continue Reading...]

Forum: What struggles does Asian American literature face?

Forum Asian American literary journals have historically burned hot but short.   Why so few of them have had much in the way of longevity is an open question, and one wonders what their vexed histories have to teach us.   What struggles does the Asian American literary journal face today?   What struggles does [Continue Reading...]