Please Note: This event has expired.
LOCAL>> Race in America: Reckonings & Restoration in the Post-Tr*#p Era
3rd annual discussion on race, with an all-female panel of literary change-makers
Featuring May-lee Chai, Myriam Gurba, Nia McAllister & Melody Moezzi
Moderated by Paula Farmer
In the aftermath of Donald Trump’s presidency, imbued with racist rhetoric and anti-immigrant legislation, we are still whirling.
Additionally, we continue to grapple with the impact of the pandemic, the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, and the subsequent Black Lives Matter protests.
Although we have a new presidential administration, there is much to reflect upon and reckon with. For the 3rd Annual Race in America special panel event, we will look at both past mistakes and lessons learned, considering our country’s persistent issues and the work that still lies before us.
Our conversation will do so with the strength of an impressive all-female panel of change-makers in honor of Women’s History Month.
May-lee Chai is the author of ten books, including the collection of short stories, Useful Phrases for Immigrants; and three novels, My Lucky Face, Dragon Chica, and Tiger Girl. May-lee is a writer and is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship; and the 2014 APALA (Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association) Literature Award. She is an Associate Professor for Creative Writing Dept. at SF State University.
Myriam Gurba is a writer, story-teller, and visual artist. She is best known for her review in Tropics of Meta of American Dirt. In 2019, O, The Oprah Magazine called Gurba’s work Mean one of the “Best LGBTQ Books of All Time”. Mean is a true crime, memoir, and ghost story, as well as the bold and hilarious tale of Myriam Gurba’s coming of age as a queer, mixed-race Chicana. Blending radical formal fluidity and caustic humor, Gurba takes on sexual violence, small towns, and race, turning what might be tragic into piercing, revealing comedy.
Nia McAllister is a poet, writer, and environmental justice advocate working at the intersection of art, activism, and public engagement. As the Public Programs Manager and Book-Buyer at The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in San Francisco, Nia strives to create participatory spaces for creative expression and literary dialogue. She is the host and founder of the Open Mic series at MoAD and has committed herself to creating platforms for amplifying the work of Black artists on a global scale. Nia’s poetry has been featured on Poets of Color Podcast, Nomadic Press Dial-A-Poet Series, and in forthcoming publications.
Melody Moezzi is an Iranian-American Muslim author, attorney, activist, and visiting associate professor of creative writing at UNCW. She is the author of Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life, War on Error: Real Stories of American Muslims, and most recently, The Rumi Prescription: How an Ancient Mystic Poet Changed My Modern Manic Life. Moezzi’s essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, and many other outlets. You can follow her on Twitter at @MelodyMoezzi and on Instagram at @Melody.Moezzi.
Heading things up is Book Passage‘s Buyer and Events Host, Paula Farmer. In addition to curating and moderating the special Book Passage panel events for social discourse and change, Paula is a features writer, and hosts “Speaking Of,” an interview series on Instagram in which she regularly talks with BIPOC authors, artists, and activists on topical issues. She is the Chairperson of the Diversity and Inclusion subcommittee of CALIBA and was recently selected for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee for the American Booksellers Association.