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Sansei and Sensibility with Karen Tei Yamashita
March 27, 2021 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm | Virtual Event
Karen Tei Yamashita is the author of seven books, including I Hotel (National Book Award finalist), Tropic of Orange, Through the Arc of the Rain Forest and Letters to Memory. Recipient of numerous awards, including the John Dos Passos Prize for Literature (2018), she is professor emerita of creative writing and literature at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Sansei and Sensibility is described by Kirkus as “An elegantly written, wryly affectionate mashup of Jane Austen and the Japanese immigrant experience. … Yamashita’s reimagining of Austen is sympathetic and funny — as on target as the movie Clueless.” In these buoyant and inventive stories, Karen Tei Yamashita transfers classic tales across boundaries and questions what an inheritance — familial, cultural, emotional, artistic — really means. In a California of the ’60s and ’70s, characters examine the contents of deceased relatives’ freezers, tape-record high school locker-room chatter, or collect a community’s gossip while cleaning the teeth of its inhabitants. Mr. Darcy is the captain of the football team, Mansfield Park materializes in a suburb of L.A., bake sales replace ballroom dances and station wagons, not horse-drawn carriages, are the preferred mode of transit. The stories of traversing class, race and gender leap into our modern world with wit and humor.
Read a Q&A with the author in the Los Angeles Review of Books.