Vietnamese American Film & Literature Envision a New Homeland

If you’re in the D.C. area, don’t miss this April 14th event that will bring together Monique Truong, Truong Tran, Mark Tran, and our very own Isabelle Thuy Pelaud to discuss how the new generation of Vietnamese American writers, artists, and filmmakers are reshaping their identities to go Beyond the War.

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Monique Truong was born in Saigon, South Vietnam, and is currently based in Brooklyn, New York. Her second novel, Bitter in the Mouth (Random House, 2010), was named a 25 Best Fiction Books by Barnes & Noble and a 10 Best Fiction Books by Hudson Booksellers. Her first novel, The Book of Salt (Houghton Mifflin, 2003), was a national bestseller, a New York Times Notable Fiction Book, and the recipient of the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award. Truong is also a contributing co-editor of Watermark: An Anthology of Vietnamese American Poetry & Prose (Asian American Writers’ Workshop, 1998). She is a graduate of Yale University and Columbia University School of Law.

Truong Tran is a poet and visual artist. His publications include, The Book of Perceptions, Placing The Accents, Dust and Conscience (awarded the San Francisco Poetry Center Book Prize in 2002), within the margin and Four Letter Words. This year, he will be a featured reader at the International Poetry Festival in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Truong lives in San Francisco and is a visiting professor of poetry at Mills College. His artwork has been shown at galleries and festivals including Intersection for the Arts and SOMARTS. In February of 2010, Truong had his first solo exhibition at The Mina Dresden Gallery. His work can be viewed on his website at http://gnourtnart.com

Mark Tran is a Vietnamese American filmmaker born and raised in California. He wrote and directed the award winning film All About Dad, a heart-warming comedy about an “old world” father and his “new world” kids. All About Dad garnered awards at film festivals and was ranked 8th from the Top 10 Asian American Films of 2009 by Asia Pacific Arts. Mark started filmmaking when he was 16 and has since directed over 30 short films, including the award-winning The Fisherman’s Troubled Odyssey, about a father’s immigration from Vietnam, and fan-favorite Binary City, a neo-noir gangster film. Mark is currently working on another screenplay and he hopes to continue telling stories from a Vietnamese American perspective.

Isabelle Pelaud will serve as the moderator for the panel discussion.  She is an associate professor in Asian American Studies at San Francisco State University. She is the author of This Is All I Choose to Tell: History and Hybridity in Vietnamese American Literature (Temple University Press, 2001). Her academic work can be found in Mixed Race LiteratureThe New Face of Asian Pacific AmericaAmerasia Journal and Michigan Quarterly Review. Her creative works have been published in Making More WavesTilting the ContinentVietnam Dialogue Inside/Out and The Perfume River. She is founder and executive director of the Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN). She seeks to create intersections within academia, activism, and the arts.

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