Erling Kagge

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“I think we’re all born explorers. When I look at my kids, they want to climb before they can walk,” says Erling Kagge in this interview with Santiago Rivas Camargo from the 2018 Hay Festival in Cartagena, Colombia. Kagge’s latest book, Walking: One Step at a Time (Pantheon Books, 2019), translated from the Norwegian by Becky L. Crook, is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

Kim Hyesoon

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“Take a microscope to the face of a beautiful woman and tell me it isn’t grotesque. Poetry is such a broad genre, it covers so many ways of looking.” Kim Hyesoon talks about her newest collection, Autobiography of a Death (New Directions, 2018), translated from the Korean by Don Mee Choi, what it means to be a female poet, and why she thinks poetry is disappearing in this 2018 interview with the Literature Translation Institute of Korea.

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Hiromi Itō

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“I’m always watching the moon and the moonlight. But I didn’t write about it.” Japanese poet Hiromi Itō talks about how the moon is linked to the menstrual cycle and her decision to write about menstruation, and reads from her poem “Vinegar, Oil” from Killing Kanoko (Action Books, 2009), translated from the Japanese by Jeffrey Angles, at the 2018 Louisiana Literature festival in Denmark.

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Erica Dawson

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“The other night, somebody asked, is Black poetry back? Like, we penned one verse, and it got lost at sea or slipped inside a big old crack in the big old earth, and then re-returned when everything was chaos.” In this PBS NewsHour video, Erica Dawson reads a poem about her experience while on tour for her poetry collection When Rap Spoke Straight to God (Tin House Books, 2018).

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Blind Spot

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“As a photographer my looking really changed, it really did become sacred....” In this Louisiana Channel video, Teju Cole talks about and reads from his book of photography and text, Blind Spot (Random House, 2017), which was inspired by a short period of blindness in one eye that transformed his perspective on looking and attentiveness. The book is comprised of over a hundred fifty photographs interspersed with short lyrical prose pieces.

Ingrid Rojas Contreras

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“I was very lucky to have family members who are all very outgoing and love to hear people talk about them.” On Late Night With Seth Meyers, Ingrid Rojas Contreras talks about how her family and childhood in Colombia inspired her first novel, Fruit of the Drunken Tree (Doubleday, 2018).

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Marci Vogel

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“I would read out loud and tried to check in my own breath, in my own body how the sentence was feeling and what kind of experience it was giving me as the first reader.” Marci Vogel reads from her books At the Border of Wilshire & Nobody (Howling Bird Press, 2015) and Death and Other Holidays (Melville House, 2018) and discusses her writing process both with poetry and prose in this Poetry.LA interview with Mariano Zaro.

Akwaeke Emezi

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“She wasn’t sure if we were real, but nothing about us felt false.” Akwaeke Emezi, a 2018 National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 honoree nominated by Carmen Maria Machado, reads from their debut novel, Freshwater (Grove Press, 2018). The novel has been longlisted for the 2019 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction.

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Les Misérables

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Tom Shankland has directed a new television series adaptation of Les Misérables, Victor Hugo’s classic 1862 historical fiction novel, for Masterpiece on PBS. The cast of characters includes a young working woman Fantine, her daughter Cosette, and police inspector Javert, who chases after fugitive Jean Valjean. Ellie Bamber, Lilly Collins, David Oyelowo, and Dominic West star in the lead roles.

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