News | 11 October 2017

Fall Living Writers Series explores histories of war, refuge and social justice


October 06, 2017


Beyond the Wall:  War, Refuge, and Home is the name of this fall’s installment of the Living Writers Series at UC Santa Cruz.

Curated by the campus’s award-winning author and literature professor Karen Tei Yamashita, the series runs through December 7 at the Humanities Lecture Hall.

“It will be a very exciting series with an amazing line up of artists, filmmakers, poets, and writers,” said Yamashita. “Their work brings insight and understanding about histories of war and refuge, and creatively provides spaces of reconciliation, social justice, and hope–a place beyond walls.”

“The title, ‘Beyond the Wall:  War, Refuge, and Home,’ pushes against the idea that we can build walls to keep others out or in, or to keep our borders safe,” Yamashita added.

“We are complicit with a long history of war and economic distress making refuge, exile, migration, and loss of home for many a necessary and cruel reality. Perhaps we are not always aware of it, but over time we’ve come to live among friends and family and neighbors who know intimately the trauma of these histories.”

Highlights of the series include readings by Viet Thanh Nguyen, whose novel, The Sympathizer, which retraced the events of the war in Vietnam and its aftermath, won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction; and Ngugi Wa Thiong’o, an exiled Kenyan novelist and theorist of postcolonial literature who is internationally known for his many books of fiction, memoir, and critical thought.

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