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AAWW Radio: New Asian American Writers-logo

AAWW Radio: New Asian American Writers

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(212) 494-0061


White Tears, Michael Jackson, Cultural Appropriation (ft. Hari Kunzru, Margo Jefferson & Kevin Nguyen)

A special discussion about music and the ghosts of America’s racial past featuring two highly acclaimed authors. A murder mystery, a ghost story, and two cultural tourists collide in Hari Kunzru’s spellbinding novel White Tears, which connects contemporary cultural appropriation and white hawkers of black music with the history of racism and the forgotten geniuses of American music and Delta Mississippi Blues. Pulitzer-Prize winning writer Margo Jefferson’s classic work of cultural...


Celebrating Nick Joaquin (ft. Gina Apostol, Ninotchka Rosca, Alex Gilvarry, & Melissa R. Sipin)

In this episode of AAWW Radio, we’re celebrating the new edition of works by Nick Joaquin titled The Woman Who Had Two Navels and Tales of the Tropical Gothic. Nick Joaquin is one of the most important writers of the Philippines who is only recently being published in the United States for the first time by Penguin Classics. Born in 1917, Joaquin wrote a surreal, anguished sentence that cast an ironic eye at colonialism’s longue durée and Catholic rites, both of which he depicted through...


Family Vs Migration (ft. Shanthi Sekaran, Rinku Sen, & Kavita Das)

In this episode of AAWW Radio, we’re featuring writers and activists confronting our immigration system that threatens families of people of color in this age of xenophobic resurgence. In early 2017, Shanthi Sekaran released her newest novel Lucky Boy which follows an undocumented eighteen-year-old Chicano mother who winds up in immigration detention--causing her son to be adopted by an upper class Desi foster mother. To write the book, Shanthi relied partly on the "Shattered Families"...


Good Girls Marry Doctors: South Asian American Daughters on Obedience and Rebellion

In late 2016 we celebrated the launch of Good Girls Marry Doctors: South Asian American Daughters on Obedience and Rebellion. This is the first anthology to examine the multiple facets of daughterhood in South Asian American families. The title, Good Girls Marry Doctors, is a tongue-in-cheek jab at the things Asian American mothers sometimes say. These first person essays are intimate, heart-breaking, political, and hilarious; and examine what it means to be the perfect Asian daughter....


The Woman Warrior (feat. Maxine Hong Kingston & Monique Truong)

In 1976, Maxine Hong Kingston published The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. A searing and subtly funny book about who gets to tell our stories, this feminist classic established themes and controversies central to Asian American literature today: what we carry from our homelands and pasts, the role of myths and family secrets, and what narratives are silenced. For the 40th anniversary of Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior, we brought her together with Monique...


Short Story Invention (ft. Akhil Sharma, Kanishk Tharoor, & Meera Nair)

In this episode of AAWW Radio, we're exploring the craft of the short story with two authors who released short story collections in 2017. The quotidian stories in Akhil Sharma’s new book simmer with a barely hidden, devastatingly emotional undercurrent―and have earned him comparisons to Chekov. Reminiscent of Calvino and Borges, Kanishk Tharoor’s lush and inventive collection ranges from science fiction to historical pastiche, delving into what is lost from environmental collapse and...


Roxane Gay & Alexander Chee

In 2014, just after the publication of her landmark essay collection Bad Feminist we hosted Roxane Gay in conversation with writer Alexander Chee at our event, The Popular is Political. They spoke about the representation of people of color in pop culture and publishing, their favorite problematic TV shows, and Roxane's obsession with Ina Garten. Music by Robert Rusli and Lu Yang


Migrant Father Fragment (ft. QM Zhang, lê thị diễm thúy, & Hua Hsu)

Q.M. Zhang and lê thị diễm thúy, writers of fragmented, hybridic, family narratives explore themes of immigration, grief, and the father with The New Yorker’s Hua Hsu. A hybrid memoir/novel that’s part espionage, part historical documentary, Q.M. Zhang’s Accomplice to Memory tells the story of her father’s mysterious exodus from China during the country’s Civil War and WWII: all the silence and love that you’ve come to know from your Asian immigrant family, but with added subterfuge and...


Searching for Home (ft. Alia Malek, Dina Nayeri, Rami Karim, and Roja Heydarpour)

Novelist Dina Nayeri, journalist Alia Malek, and poet Rami Karim's work surrounds Middle East politics, revolution, and the refugee experience. You may have read Iranian-American novelist Dina Nayeri’s viral story in The Guardian, “The Ungrateful Refugee: We Have No Debt to Pay.” She reads from her book Refuge, a powerful story of a daughter who leaves Iran, but leaves her father behind. Syrian-American journalist Alia Malek returned to Damascus to live in her grandfather’s home–just as...


Refugee Requiem (ft. Bao Phi, Patrick Rosal, Sokunthary Svay)

Poets Patrick Rosal, Bao Phi, and Sokunthary Svay confront nationalist mythology with lyrical odes to the America we struggle against, and the one being built through struggle. Patrick Rosal—who the Academy of American Poets honored for writing the best book of poetry of the year—uncovers forgotten multi-racial histories through his family’s journey from the Phillipines to Brooklyn. Bao Phi and Sokunthary Svay trace their arrival into Minneapolis and the Bronx as refugees. They speak into...


The Face (ft. Ruth Ozeki and Tash Aw)

Authors Ruth Ozeki and Tash Aw read from their contributions to an innovative new series from Restless books titled THE FACE, which asks writers to offer a guided tour of that most intimate terrain: their own faces. Afterwards they have a conversation with AAWW Executive Director Ken Chen. In Ruth Ozeki’s piece A Time Code, she provides a Buddhist meditation of the second-by-second experience of the author watching her own face. Tash Aw’s Strangers on a Pier gives the reader--in the...


AAWW Radio Podcast Teaser

AAWW Radio is the podcast of the Asian American Writers' Workshop, a national nonprofit dedicated to the idea that Asian American stories deserve to be told. Listen to AAWW Radio and you’ll hear selected audio from our live events. We’ve hosted established writers like Claudia Rankine, Maxine Hong Kingston, Roxane Gay, Amitav Ghosh, and Hanya Yanagihara, as well as more emerging writers like Ocean Vuong, Solmaz Sharif, and Jenny Zhang. Our events are intimate and intellectual, quirky yet...