The AWP writers’…

The AWP writers' conference (in Chicago this year!) starts tomorrow and runs through Saturday; it's sadly sold out, so if you're not already registered, I'm afraid it's too late for this year.

But if you are attending, I hope you'll considering attending these South Asian literature events (and if I didn't get you on this list, please do feel free to write and let me know!):

Thursday: 4:30 - 5:45 p.m.
R225. Agha Shahid Ali, the Ghazal, and the Destruction of Kashmir
(Paul Breslin, Stephen Burt, Raza Hasan, Ravi Shankar)
Continental A, Hilton Chicago, Lobby Level
This panel focuses on the transnational and elegiac aspects of Agha Shahid Ali�s English-language ghazals, as well as the hybrid Indo-Persian aesthetic and Islamic poetic tradition. It also examines Ali�s anticolonial and anti-imperialist stance, and the transformation from this into something more equivocal in his later poetry, which deals with the destruction of his homeland. Finally, the panel explores the close connection between the poetry�s transnational and decolonization impulses.

Thursday: 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
DesiLit meet-up: Meet in the Hilton bar for drinks with your South Asian peeps!

Friday: 3:00 - 4:15 p.m.
F215. Shifting Intimacies: A Reading by South Asian Diasporic Writers
(Roksana Badruddoja, Ravi Shankar, Leena Pendharkar, Vidhu Aggarwal, Nirmala Nataraj)
Empire Ballroom, Palmer House Hilton, Lobby Level
How does the notion of identity create intimacy in forms of consciousness from poetry to stand-up comedy? An array of South Asian writers from Paint it Brown! (Cognella Press, 2011) take up this question. As the writers in this anthology show, what matters is not the barrage of queries about race, national identity, and form but the vulnerability and depth that such queries expose. Together, they paint a fascinating and complicated portrait of what it is to be a diasporic South Asian today!

Friday: 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
DesiLit meet-up: Meet in the Hilton bar for drinks with your South Asian peeps!

And it's not a specifically South Asian event, but I'll be on this panel, and would be very happy to meet you, have tea afterwards, make plans for lunch, etc. :-)

Saturday: 9 - 10:15 a.m.
S105. Who Doesn�t Want to Be Popular?: Adventures in Teaching With, For, Around, and Through Commercial Fiction
(Lori Rader Day, Scott Blackwood, Kat Falls, Tod Goldberg, Mary Anne Mohanraj)
Continental B, Hilton Chicago, Lobby Level
The writing is what matters�or is it? The longstanding argument between literary and genre writers proves that, sometimes, it�s about more than the words on the page. Writers and teachers of both commercial and literary fiction discuss how that battle plays out in the creative writing classroom. Should students be allowed to write whatever they want? How do we teach students who write in genres we don�t read? What lessons might come from genre-bending? What resources do we turn to?

It can sometimes be tricky finding people at AWP, so if you're thinking you might try to find me during the convention, please feel free to drop me an e-mail, and I'll give you my cell number. That usually seems to work best.

South Asian & diaspora writers I believe are attending: Vidhu Aggarwal, Roksana Badruddoja, Neelanjana Banerjee, Devi Bhaduri, V.V. (Sugi) Ganeshananthan, Shaily Menon, Mary Anne Mohanraj, Nirmala Nataraj, Leena Pendharkar, Srikanth Reddy, Ravi Shankar, Padma Vishwanathan, Naazish Yarkhan

And if you're looking for me, here's a recent photo. :-)

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