The Chorus of There’s a Revolution Outside, My Love: Letters from a Crisis

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The new anthology, edited by Tracy K. Smith and John Freeman, documents last summer’s period of quarantine and protest, bewilderment and commitment. Over the pages, the resonances build like voices gathered in a street singing justice songs.

Homeland Elegies and America’s Liberal Project

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Ayad Akhtar poses a challenge to liberal consensus not by denying the existence of America’s foundational inequalities along lines of race, class, and gender, but by questioning whether the liberal project of advancement through representation is capable of catalyzing the structural changes necessary to address them.

From “I” to “We” in Winter and Refugia

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Collections by Sarah Vap and Kyce Bello, united in their simultaneous gaze on mothering and our ongoing human-created climate emergency, show us that dissolution of the individual self is inevitable and necessary— not only in motherhood, but also as we face the climate crisis.

“Sometimes the poems know things that we don’t know ourselves”: An Interview with Jay Deshpande

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Recognizing the ephemerality of their wisdoms, Deshpande allows his poems to exist as monuments to themselves, that we might return to them in the future and experience their lessons anew.

The Ghosts of the Unseen in The Ones Who Don’t Say They Love You

Maurice Carlos Ruffin writes about fathers trying to reach their sons, about peoples recently released from prison, about fathers with dead daughters, about people experiencing homelessness, showing the erasure that they feel by writing about these unseen, and about the ghosts that try to reach them.

Revisiting James Wright’s Shall We Gather at the River at Fifty-One

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It is an understatement to say that Wright’s fourth collection had its work cut out for it, and it is no surprise the reception of the book was dramatically and passionately mixed.

Love, Community, and Honesty in Jane Wong’s Meet Me Tonight in Atlantic City

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Jane Wong’s memoir reminded me that Asian American literature could be more than stories of poverty or prestige porn. Reading it is not always comfortable—some anecdotes are sad, squeamish, and cringe-inducing, but it is an honest look at a working-class community that is too often forgotten.

Considering the Wedding Poem

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One does not take notes from the epithalamium for instructions on how to arrange a wedding, how to make a marriage successful, how to communicate with a loved one. The wedding poem anticipates its continued listening, sometime in the future.

“Writing about motherhood provides a great vantage point from which to write about society”: An Interview with Jessamine Chan

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The double-sided expectations are the heart of Jessamine Chan’s debut novel. Motherhood is deeply personal and yet easily judged by Instagram followers and the state alike. Chan’s book asks: Can motherhood be measured by the performance of it?

“To write about Geppetto is to write about fatherhood, and at the same time he is a creator of a monster”: An Interview with Edward Carey

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Pinocchio is such a fixture of culture that most authors would be too nervous to interact with the classic story in any extended way. Edward Carey’s latest novel is audacious in this regard, giving us the untold tale of Geppetto in bold illustration and dynamic, resonant text.