UNLV writers José Orduña, author of The Weight of Shadows: A Memoir of Immigration and Displacement, and Douglas Unger, author of the political-issue based novels Leaving the Land and Voices from Silence, have a conversation about literary activism in today’s political climate. How can literary writing engage struggles for justice in an era of militarized borders, racism, and class oppression?
For tonight’s program, the Black Mountain Institute presents breakout fiction writer Lisa Ko. She reads excerpts from her book
The Leavers, the story of a mother who vanishes and leaves an 11-year-old boy to build a life in the US with an adopted family. The book has won the 2016 PEN/Bellwether Award for Socially Engaged Fiction, a prize awarded to a novel that addresses issues of social justice.
Tonight’s lecture will feature a reading by breakout poet Chen Chen as part of The Black Mountain Institute’s emerging writers series. Chen Chen will be reading original poetry from his book When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities. His poetry has appeared in The Best American Poetry anthology and The Best American Nonrequired Reading anthology.
In October, Amanda Fortini documented the Route 91 shooting for the The New Yorker magazine News Desk. Featuring interviews with survivors. Tonight, Fortini will give a brief reading of her articles followed by a conversation about how she conducted the interviews, as well as her writing method and influences.
Professor of English at Arizona State University, Devoney Looser, gives a lecture on how Jane Austen, a moderetly successful English novelist in her own lifetime, became an international literary icon including some unsung innovators who turned Austen into a household name.