Author Archive

Inking Well: An Interview With Jasminne Mendez

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If you’re at all alive in the Houston arts scene, chances are you’ve crossed paths with Jasminne Mendez in one of her capacities: as a poet, as an actor, as an educator, as a podcast host, or as a community organizer and programmer (sometimes all of these things in
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What We Talk About When We Talk About Humanizing People In Literature

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In the wake of the recent Supreme Court decision ruling that immigrants, documented or not, can be detained indefinitely without right to a bond hearing, I’ve been thinking a lot about the way we produce and consume narratives about class and race in contemporary American literature.
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Cultural Legibility in America’s Dark Chapter

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What does it mean to be culturally legible? And what does cultural legibility mean with regard to writing about or from within one’s own culture?
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Can Twitter Make Trauma Generic? And If So, What Should We Do About It?

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As a writer, I've been thinking about the importance of our trauma—the needle-pushing trauma of the #MeToo movement, of the interrogation of "post-truth," of the existential crisis necessary for confronting something like climate change, or the stories beyond the body counts of the drug war in Mexico.
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Rodrigo Hasbún’s Affections: Identity in a Post-Truth Era

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It’s perhaps because of the invisible currents that inform "post-truth" that I’m finding myself reading and rereading Rodrigo Hasbún’s Affections, which is hands down my favorite book of 2017.
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Reading Baldwin after Harvey: Why Climate Change is a Social Justice Issue

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Of course, the circumstances between Hurricane Harvey and the 1943 Harlem riots are different, but the fault lines exposed by those events are not.
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Before the Storm and After, Houston Still a Poet’s City

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Houston is a poet’s city. I’d say more so than a fiction city, or a playwright’s city, or even a petroleum city for that matter (though, of course, it’s all of those things too).
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Why Culture Cops Are Bad for Writers of Color

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The biggest fear of most professional writers I know is drawing the ire of the internet. This is especially true among writers of color I know. Our literary communities are no exception to the dark allures of destructive, righteous outrage.
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You Can’t Trust Anybody in Elvira Navarro’s A Working Woman (And What That Says About Us)

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Elvira Navarro’s A Working Woman, translated by Christina MacSweeney, interrogates the psyche of characters mired by the Spanish economic crisis and the realities and lies they build around themselves in search of catharsis.
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Examining Our American Disillusion With Alberto Fuguet

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I’ve been thinking too much about reality entertainment lately. It was inevitable that I would find myself reading Alberto Fuguet’s The Movies of My Life this summer, and I’ve been wondering: how does a country cope with disillusion? Or rather, how does a person deal with its dissolution?
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