"I feel my passions are forever pulling me in different directions, each tying and severing themselves from me of their own free will. Writing fiction is the only way I’ve been able to track these flippant passions and preserve them in some way."

Catching Fire: Vivian Pham in Conversation with Vi Khi Nao

"I feel my passions are forever pulling me in different directions, each tying and severing themselves from me of their own free will. Writing fiction is the only way I’ve been able to track these flippant passions and preserve them in some way."

Editor’s Note: Ten Points on Vietnamese Diasporic Stories

I see our threads separating and I want to know more. What is your story? I want to ask.

In the Diaspora: October 2020

Socio-cultural, literary, and political news and events relating to the Vietnamese diaspora and to Việt Nam.

Editor’s Closing Notes: Currents

Over the past two years of editing diaCRITICS (and over the last decade of contributing to both DVAN and diaCRITICS), I’ve given much thought to the tensions between the individual and the collective, in particular to how this is weighted for a Vietnamese person in the diaspora, who must navigate multiple points of pressures, both internal and external, familial and societal.

Book Review: Fantasy by Kim-Anh Schreiber

Fantasy is about what we might have or could have inherited and the specific grief of disinheritance as well as a fear of losing cultural memory and identity. It’s a type of existential horror that Schreiber writes about and, like any horror story, there’s a feeling of dread that what haunts us will continue despite the story’s ending.

Angels ~ a poem by Genaro Kỳ Lý Smith

News came to me of two men falling from the sky after having been birthed from the steel, burning carcass of their mother.

A Great Lake

An excerpt of Nam Le's book, "On David Malouf: Writers on Writers." Le's latest book is part of a series where writers reflect on and respond to the legacy of noteworthy Australian authors who have preceded them.

THIS IS FOR MẸ: Blood Utterances

"Oh, sure. I mean, it isn’t very spacious, my womb. Always been a little too small. Suffocating, even."

Sự thật đằng sau việc tháo gỡ các tượng đài ở Mỹ

Thử tưởng tượng một thời gian sau khi Miền Nam thất thủ vào ngày 30 tháng 4, 1975, các tượng đài của các tướng sĩ của phe thua cuộc Việt Nam Cộng Hòa bỗng được dựng lên nhan nhản tại các tỉnh thành hay những địa danh ghi dấu các trận đánh lịch sử? Và thử tưởng tượng lá cờ vàng ba gạch đỏ vẫn tung bay đâu đó tại một vài nơi ở Việt Nam?

Coming of Age in Cabramatta

"Given the current debates about representation in literature, I find myself reflecting on how I have always preferred books to be windows rather than mirrors. I was a voracious reader from a young age but growing up I didn’t particularly yearn for stories about what it meant to be Vietnamese – especially in Australia – because I was already drowning in the experience of it."

GB Tran Is A Cartoonist Dad in the “Age of Covid”

"A cartoonist has gotta cartoon, though, so I redirected my energy into these spontaneous diary comics to document and process this next normal. Five months later, they've become essential in maintaining my sanity during these continued insane times."
2020 September Feature Image

In the Diaspora: September 2020

Socio-cultural, literary, and political news and events relating to the Vietnamese diaspora and to Việt Nam.

Nhà (hàng): Confessions of a Restaurant Kid

The restaurant and this building I was about to go into for the last time was where I learned to walk. It was where I learned to talk. And now I had to say goodbye. 

Book Review: The Coconut Children

"Coconut Children" is a coming-of-age story about a cohort forever uneasy with itself and others. A generation that was taken from Vietnam before it could lay roots, and then transplanted to a land where the soil was rich but alien, never quite nourishing.

Land as Memory, Body as Subject: To Call Oneself a Vietnamese Settler

As a settler, and someone whose familial and ancestral history is also tied to histories of displacement, understanding and living on Indigenous land is a political commitment that is just as important as understanding my fractured relationship to my family’s homeland of Vietnam.

Fuck off, we’re full ~ a poem by Tracey Lien

To move to another suburb, for another school, because the pre-school teacher said there were too many Asians at this one, that you’d develop an Asian accent, that a new environment was the only way to cleanse the tongue.