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About the event

Join us for an evening of storytelling by past and present CUNY students on the struggles, challenges, and hopes of immigrant and working-class New Yorkers in the 21st century.

The evening will feature authors reading their works, followed by a discussion with faculty and authors on the power of storytelling, including autoethnography, a qualitative social science research method that reflexively turns the lens back onto the writer. This method emerged in the 1970s among scholars of color and feminists as a challenge to the prevailing scholarship and has grown in popularity since the 1990s. Many of the original works are told through an autoethnographic lens, critically reflecting on society and how the writer’s life and identity are shaped by multiple social forces, such as immigration, racism, US militarism, cultural trauma, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia, gender inequality, structural violence, and social injustice.

The featured writings were created in a writing workshop held in fall 2017 led by acclaimed novelist and poet Bushra Rehman at the Asian American Writers Workshop as part of the Public Education and Racial (In)Justice Seminar. Other works were produced in an autobiographical writing class led by "Our Stories, Our Voices: Community Archives" faculty co-leader Kathy McDonald.

Co-sponsored by the Autoethnographies of Public Education and Racial (In)Justice research group, and Our Stories, Our Voices: Community Archives from the Mellon Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research, and The Asian American Writer's Workshop.