Steph Cha on Standing in Solidarity Against the Police, Cathy Park Hong on Coalition Building, and More

by Staff
3.19.21

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—publishing reports, literary dispatches, academic announcements, and more—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today’s stories.

“A white man had targeted Asian spas, killed eight people, six of them Asian women, and the police refused to recognize a racist motive.” Examining how law enforcement has handled the recent shootings in Atlanta, novelist Steph Cha writes about how the police have long enabled white violence and taken advantage of Asian American communities. (Los Angeles Times)

“I’m already seeing media trying to whitewash this incident.” In an interview with the Atlantic, Cathy Park Hong shares an initial reaction to the Atlanta shootings and discusses recent coalition building within and beyond the Asian American community.

The Association of University Presses has taken a closer look at diversity in academic publishing, using data from the Lee & Low Books Diversity Baseline Survey. The analysis found that 81 percent of university press workers are white—six points higher than the figure for trade publishing. (Publishers Weekly)

“This pain is not just recent; anti-Asian animus has a long history in America.” Voices of Our Nations Arts, a community organization and multi-genre workshop that serves writers of color, has issued a statement condemning anti-Asian violence.

“Maurice died of COVID-related illness but local elected officials were stonewalling me, refusing to swab or autopsy his body. I was dumbstruck by what had and was happening—freaked, bereft, isolated, inarticulate—and when words failed me, photography didn’t.” Marvin Heiferman reflects on making and sharing photographs while grieving the death of his husband. (Literary Hub)

“Inside Kristin’s exhaustively rendered world of cotton and tallow, mud and sweat, I found myself remembering the reach of my own senses.” Lucia Tang writes about experiencing a shock of recognition while reading a novel trilogy set in fourteenth-century Norway. (Electric Literature)

“A world war had come and gone, the Book Review had changed and changed again, but ‘books as news’ remained its guiding philosophy.” Noor Qasim writes about the origins and evolution of the New York Times Book Review.

“New York is the only thing I’ve been able to commit to. Other than poetry.” Alex Dimitrov reflects on his poetic lineage and locality. (BOMB)