CANCELLED - Rachel DeWoskin - "Two Menus" - Rosanna Warren

Wednesday, April 22, 2020 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm
Event Presenter/Author: 
Rachel DeWoskin

**This event has been cancelled. We hope to reschedule in the coming months.** 

Rachel DeWoskin will discuss Two Menus. She will be joined in conversation by Rosanna Warren. A Q&A and signing will follow the discussion.

Presented in partnership with the University of Chicago Creative Writing and Poetics

RSVP HERE (Please note that your RSVP is requested but not required)

At the Co-op

About the book: There are two menus in a Beijing restaurant, Rachel DeWoskin writes in the title poem, “the first of excess, / second, scarcity.” DeWoskin invites us into moments shaped by dualities, into spaces bordered by the language of her family (English) and that of her new country (Chinese), as well as the liminal spaces between youth and adulthood, safety and danger, humor and sorrow. This collection works by building and demolishing boundaries and binaries, sliding between their edges in movements that take us from the familiar to the strange and put us face-to-face with our assumptions and confusions. Through these complex and interwoven poems, we see how a self is never singular. Rather, it is made up of shifting—and sometimes colliding—parts. DeWoskin crosses back and forth, across languages and nations, between the divided parts in each of us, tracing overlaps and divergences. The limits and triumphs of translation, the slipperiness of relationships, and movements through land and language rise and fall together.

The poems in Two Menus offer insights into the layers of what it means to be human, to reconcile living as multiple selves. DeWoskin dives into the uncertain spaces, showing us how a life lived between walls is murky, strange, and immensely human. These poems ask us how to communicate across the boundaries that threaten to divide us, to measure and close the distance between who we are, were, and want to be.  

About the author: Rachel DeWoskin is the author of five critically acclaimed novels: BansheeSomeday We Will FlyBlindBig Girl Small, and Repeat After Me; and the memoir Foreign Babes in Beijing, about the years she spent in Beijing as the unlikely star of a Chinese soap opera. Her poetry collection Two Menus, is forthcoming in 2020 from the University of Chicago Press. DeWoskin has Hollywood development deals for Foreign Babes in Beijing and Banshee, and her essays, poems, reviews, and translations have appeared in The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, The Sunday Times Magazine of London, Conde Nast Traveler, The Asian Wall Street Journal, The Far Eastern Economic Review, Agni, Ploughshares, The New Delta Review, The New Orleans Review, Seneca Review, and numerous journals and anthologies. She is an Associate Professor of Practice in the Arts at the University of Chicago and an affiliated faculty member in Jewish and East Asian Studies.

About the interlocutor: Rosanna Warren teaches at the University of Chicago. She is the author of four books of poetry, most recently Departure (2003) and Ghost in a Red Hat (2011). Her new volume of poems So Forth, will appear in May 2020, and her biography of Max Jacob in the Fall of 2020. She has published a book of literary criticism and edited a volume of essays about translation, and has received awards from the Academy of American Poets, The American Academy of Arts & Letters, the Lila Wallace Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the New England Poetry Club, among others.

Event Location: 
The Seminary Co-op Bookstore
5751 S Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637