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Authenticity in Fiction

Thursday, October 24, 2019
11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
CASL Building

Join us for this special presentation from Susan Muaddi Darraj on "Authenticity in Fiction."

Writers of color are often tagged with the burden of being ‘authentic.’ This is a complex term, but here’s one way to think about it: Writers shouldn’t worry about “representation.” Instead they should strive for three things: specificity, multiplicity, and voice in their stories.

Susan Muaddi Darraj's short story collection, A Curious Land: Stories from Home, was named the winner of the AWP Grace Paley Prize for Short Fiction, judged by Jaime Manrique. It also won the 2016 Arab American Book Award and was shortlisted for a Palestine Book Award. Her previous short story collection, The Inheritance of Exile, was published in 2007 by University of Notre Dame Press. In 2018, she was named a 2018 Ford Fellow by USA Artists. Susan also is a two-time recipient of an Individual Artist Award from the Maryland State Arts Council. She has also been awarded a Ruby’s Artist Grant from the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance and a grant from the Sustainable Arts Foundation. In 2019, she launched the viral #TweetYourThobe social media campaign to promote Palestinian culture. Later that year, she was named winner of the Rose Nader Award, by the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), an award given by the Nader family to a person who “demonstrates an unwavering dedication and commitment to values of equality and justice.” In January 2020, Capstone Books will launch her debut children’s chapter book series, Farah Rocks, about a smart, brave Palestinian American girl named Farah Hajjar.

This is sponsored by: the MEST Transnational Middle East Public Lecture Series, a CASL Integrated Bands Initiative; the Dept. of Literature, Philosophy, and the Arts; and the Center for Arab American Studies.

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Hosted by:

Dept. of Literature, Philosophy, and the Arts


Prof. Ghassan Abou-Zeineddine

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