Author Topic: Cultural Consonance -- a reading on June 30  (Read 1366 times)

Offline Nevart

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Cultural Consonance -- a reading on June 30
« on: May 30, 2012, 05:12:03 PM »
 Cultural Consonance: A reading of cross cultural literature between Queens and the world
Saturday, June 30
1:30 -- 3:30 pm
Greater Astoria Historical Society
Quinn Building, 35-20 Broadway, 4th Floor, Long Island City, NY 11106
(near the R train at Steinway or the NQ train at Broadway)
with Ahimsa Timoteo Bodhrán, Joseph O. Legaspi, Margarita Soto, and Sweta Srivastava Vikram
$5 suggested donation

Come hear five diverse writers whose work is centered in Queens (or NYC or the U.S.) and another location, as they consider how words can express the experience of traversing worlds.  How can a writer provide cultural immersion for a reader through image and language?  How does memory and history play a part in how we portray setting, location or place?  And why is it important to convey such cross cultural experiences – artistically, socially, politically, or otherwise?

Nancy Agabian, Ahimsa Timoteo Bodhrán, Joseph O. Legaspi, Margarita Soto, and Sweta Srivastava Vikram will read fiction, poetry and nonfiction that crosses borders, cultures and ideologies.  They'll also discuss their experience of incorporating history -- personal, cultural, and/or geographical -- as part of the writing process.

Writers' Bios:

Nancy Agabian is the author of Princess Freak, a collection of poems and performance texts on sexuality and rage, and Me as her again: True Stories of an Armenian Daughter, a memoir on the influence of her family's dark history on her coming-of-age. She is currently working on “The Fear of Large and Small Nations”, a book that documents her relationship with a younger Armenian man, composed of blog posts and journal entries that travel back and forth in time between Yerevan and Queens. Documenting the couple's changes as “foreigners” and “natives” as they married in Armenia and moved to America, she explores the contradictions between political ideals and personal freedom, in countries both large and small, powerful and vulnerable. Nancy teaches writing at Queens College and NYU.  She maintains a website at

Ahimsa Timoteo Bodhrán is the author of Antes y después del Bronx: Lenapehoking (New American Press) and the editor of an international queer Indigenous issue of Yellow Medicine Review: A Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art, and Thought. An American Studies Ph.D. candidate at Michigan State University, he has completed a second book of poems, South Bronx Breathing Lessons, and is completing Yerbabuena/Mala yerba, All My Roots Need Rain: mixed-blood poetry & prose and Heart of the Nation: Indigenous Womanisms, Queer People of Color, and Native Sovereignties. His work appears in over a hundred publications in sixteen nations.

Joseph O. Legaspi is the author of Imago (CavanKerry Press), winner of a Global Filipino Literary Award. Recent poems appeared or are forthcoming in From the Fishouse, jubilat, World Literature Today,The Spoon River Poetry Review, Smartish Pace, PEN International and The Gay & Lesbian Review.  A Queens, NY resident, he co-founded Kundiman (, a non-profit organization serving Asian American poets. Visit him at

Margarita Soto received her Bachelor's in Social Work from Brigham Young University and her Juris Doctor from Rutgers Law School- Newark. She worked as a social worker and then prosecutor investigating and prosecuting child abuse and neglect for 10 years. A Peruvian American, she participated in the “Our Side” workshop for immigrant writers in 2009 and contributed her memoir, “Snowback” to their chapbook, A Home Calls My Name.  As a full time mom to three children, she also manages a family homestead in central Pennsylvania where she and her husband raise pigs, cows, chickens, and grow over 100 varieties of fruits and vegetables. She writes about introducing her children to passionate eating at

Sweta Srivastava Vikram is an award-winning poet, writer, novelist, author, essayist, columnist, educator, and blogger. Born in India, Sweta spent her formative years between India, North Africa, and the United States. She is the author of four chapbooks of poetry, two collaborative collections of poetry, a novel, a nonfiction book of prose and poems (upcoming in 2012), and a full-length collection of poems (upcoming in 2013).  Sweta has won two Pushcart Prize nominations, an International Poetry Award, and nominations from Best of the Net and the Asian American Members’ Choice Awards 2011.  She will be reading from her Pushcart-nominated chapbook of poems Kaleidoscope: An Asian Journey of Colors which presents the relevance of colors in a Hindu woman's life, and her novel, Perfectly Untraditional, set in India and New York, about a modern day woman and 1st generation immigrant as she unravels the meaning of home, traditions, friendships, relationships, love, and loyalty. Sweta lives in Queens with her husband.  You can follow her on Twitter (@ssvik), Facebook (Words.By.Sweta) or her website (

Books by the authors will be made available for purchase and signing.

The Greater Astoria Historical Society lecture hall/exhibit space is the unofficial public meeting space in the Long Island City/Astoria area. It is available for business meetings, seminars, conferences, fundraisers, media events, press conferences, and film shoots.

This reading is made possible (in part) by the Queens Council on the Arts and Poets & Writers, Inc., with public funding from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.


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