Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Wah Symposium: Writing Public Selves

The Writer-in-Residence Program
at Simon Fraser University presents

Count Me In:
Writing Public Selves

SFU, Harbour Centre
Thursday, May 31, 2007

A colloquium exploring “the turn to language” as
medium and limit in current writing practices.

What are the social and creative conditions of this turn? How do writers deal with the uneven effects of power relations, representation, and the politics of identity? How can creative forms take on public visibility as a critical force in our social and cultural interactions?

Join the writers who will address these and related questions in an afternoon session of provocative talks, followed by an evening reading by writers who have consulted with Writer-in-Residence Fred Wah.

Afternoon Session: Room HC 1315
2 - 3:15 pm:
Welcome Remarks: Sophie McCall
Fred Wah, “Me Too (Two): A Poetics Talk”
Jeff Derksen, "Space Agent Wah"

3:30 - 5:00 pm:
“Languaging the ‘I’: Writing in Shifty Contexts”
Moderator: Clint Burnham
Panelists: David Chariandy, Larissa Lai, and Roy Miki

7 pm, Evening Reading: Room HC 1700
Mercedes Eng, Jef Clarke, Emmanuel Raymundo, Neda Abkari, Peter Quartermain, Meg Walker, Tony Power, Joy Russell, Emily Fedoruk, Andrew Lee

With Thanks
Sponsored by the Writer-in-Residence Program with funding assistance from the Canada Council, the Office of the President, and the Dean of Arts and Social Sciences, Simon Fraser University

Monday, May 14, 2007

Tectonic Plague

Come help kick off an exciting new reading series!

*Play Chthonics* Spring Reading

: Fred Booker
: Hiromi Goto
: Dorothy Trujillo Lusk
: Meredith Quartermain

READING 7:30 pm


(Green College is located at the north end of the UBC campus, across the street (north) from the Chan Center for the Performing Arts, east of the Museum of Anthropology. Parking available adjacent to Green College.)

Organized by graduate students and faculty in the English Department and the Program in Comparative Literature at UBC, *Play Chthonics* is a 2007/2008 Writers Reading Series that focuses on innovative poetry, narrative, and cross-genre experimentation.

Author biographies:

Fred Booker has been writing in Canada since 1966. His first book, a collection of short stories titled Adventures in Debt Collection, was published September 2006 by Commodore Books in Vancouver. Stories from the collection have appeared in Event, Windsor Review, Whetstone and West Coast Line and have been read on Peter Norman's show HEARSAY. He lives and writes in Burnaby.

Hiromi Goto has published short stories and critical writing in, among others, Ms magazine and the Oxford University Press anthology, Making A Difference. Her first novel, Chorus of Mushrooms, was the 1995 recipient of the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize Best First Book Canada and Caribbean Region and the co-winner of the Canada-Japan Book Award. Her second novel, The Kappa Child, was the 2001 winner of the James Tiptree Jr. Memorial Award and was short-listed for the regional Commonwealth Writer’s Prize, Best Book Award. Her most recent book, Hopeful Monsters, (Arsenal) is a collection of short stories.

Dorothy Trujillo Lusk is a Vancouver poet and the author of Oral Tragedy (Tsunami, 1988), Redactive (Talon, 1993), Sleek Vinyl Drill (Thuja, 2000), Ogress Oblige (Krupskaya, 2001) and the forthcoming collection Decorum. Lusk is a longtime member of the Kootenay School of Writing collective. She was awarded The Small Press Traffic Book Award for Ogresse Oblige in 2001.

Meredith Quartermain won a BC Book Award in 2006, the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize, for her most recent book: Vancouver Walking (NeWest). Other books and chapbooks include Terms of Sale (1996), A Thousand Mornings (2002) and The Eye-Shift of Surface (2003). Wanders (2002) contains her poem answers to 19 poems by Robin Blaser. Her work has also appeared in Canadian Literature, Prism International, The Capilano Review, West Coast Line, Raddle Moon, Ecopoetics, Chain, Sulfur, Tinfish and other magazines. She runs, with husband Peter Quartermain, Nomados Literary Publishers, in Vancouver, BC.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

identity returned

home now. after granada, i passed briefly through frankfurt again, and had a lovely visit with katja sarkowski and her partner alex. breakfast with astrid franke, and afterwards delicious ice cream from what katja and alex assured me was the best in best shop in frankfurt. debriefed the conference a bit. learned much as well about the structure of the german academy. apparently it's common for people to wait years after a job interview to find out if they got the job or not!
next day, on to cyprus, and two nights of chill out with the inimitable frances kruk in larnaca before heading to nicosia for performing identity. the conference took place in a beautiful gothic hall, the last remnant of a castle that had once stood over it. lots of interesting talks, great performances from david khang, anne holloway, david bateman and hiromi goto. ashok mathur and david bateman, who organized, set up a very productive format. papers were posted beforehand, so that the sessions could be used primarily for discussion. nightly crossings through the u.n. green zone into the turkish-controlled north. green zone a mess of razor wire, abandoned buildings, an old hotel turned into a u.n. compound, anti-turkish propanda on weather-worn billboards. the north itself dingy, but beautiful, untouched by the tentacles of global capital. all over both sides of the fence we met migrant workers in the service industry who long to come to canada. stories of dreams and scams abound.
after the conference we split into smaller groups to explore the island a bit. david khang, frances kruk and i went to paphos (touristy yucky-- avoid the poseidon restaurant at all costs, unless you like boiled vegetables, minute rice and pulpy octopus) and then up to polis and latsi (beautiful) with a brief detour down to the temple of aphrodite near kouklia village. it's very ruined. somehow, for me, this made it the most poignant and beautiful place of the trip, in spite of my having witnessed extraordinary architecture elsewhere. (who worshipped here? how? how might we live differently devoted to more than one deity?) in latsi, we snuck /stumbled into a very deluxe resort compound, drank their drinks and napped on the pretty poolside beds. bad mice having a good time. finally, bus and service taxi back to larnaca, where we ate every meal at kapos allios, a charming home-style restaurant that serves the most delicious broad beans (with cucumber, tomato, mystery green leaves and crushed mint), eggplant, cauliflower and sardines.