Famine and Gratitude: thoughts on Thanksgiving – Kristin Chang

My hometown doesn’t celebrate Thanksgiving. In a city of pho restaurants and Chinese groceries and one H-Mart that brags it’s open 365 days as year (the sign in 5 languages), everything is open on Thanksgiving. No one takes a break or eats turkey or bakes pies, and when I was little, I was ashamed of…

5 POETS TO READ THIS FALL – Kristin Chang

Grappling with everything from identity to immigration to cyborgs, these 5 poets prove that poetry contains multitudes.  Delving into the intimacy of the self and landscapes of history, these poets use their craft to prove that the personal is political, and that poetry isn’t just relevant, it’s everything we need right now.  As the poet…

“Speak american” by Kristin Chang

Speak american by Kristin Chang   Talk like you’re bred to be here. I oil my inner thighs, swear the skin off my bones, bathe in all the flammables: polystyrene/benzene/gasoline make napalm B make a body meant for burning. If this country has a name, we must leave it. Truth is, there is always something out…

I Will Never Be Cho Chang

BY KRISTIN CHANG In fifth grade, I dressed up as Hermione Granger for Halloween. My costume was made entirely of household parts: my wand was a chopstick, my robe was stitched from an old baby blanket, and I’d drawn red and gold stripes onto a napkin for a tie. I was proud of my costume,…

On the burden of heritage

BY KRISTIN CHANG Before coming to Sarah Lawrence, I never truly considered API (Asian/Pacific Islander) Heritage Month to be a real thing: though my high school was majority East and South Asian, we never acknowledged May as anything other than the hectic time before finals, or when the weather was just starting to scorch.  A…

Poetry Playlist: A Celebration of Asian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month

BY KRISTIN CHANG Poetry Playlist: A Celebration of Asian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month  SPAM’s carbon footprint by Craig Perez Santos Microaggression Bingo by Fatimah Asghar Anna May Wong goes home with Bruce Lee by Sally Wen Mao alka finds a hair by Shakthi Shrima Linsanity by Kien Lam Sestina by Ira Sukrungruang Jasmine puts Monkey in…

Interview: Mwinga K. Sinjela and Nabila Wirakusumah of NUANCE

By Kristin Chang  NUANCE describes itself as a dynamic online platform for artists and writers of color across all mediums.  Based at Sarah Lawrence, but currently expanding to encompass artists of color outside of campus, NUANCE showcases the creative work of young people of color in an ongoing series of “Happenings,” as well as through…

The Politics of Home: Race Fatigue, Gentrification, and Complicity

By Kristin Chang The week before spring break, I could barely sleep.  I woke up every two hours and stared into the dark – maybe a little melodramatic, but I couldn’t fall back to sleep. Instead, I spent the rest of my nights thinking about going “home” for spring break, counting down the days and…

Saying “We Are All Immigrants” is How White Liberalism Becomes Revisionism

by Kristin Chang “We are all immigrants”: the rallying cry of (white) liberals protesting against the Muslim Ban and other xenophobic and anti-immigrant executive orders our federal government is currently brewing.  The problem is, of course, statements like “We are a nation of immigrants” only reinforce the romantic myth of multiculturalism in the US, in…