Tuesday, September 9, 2008

How Does it Feel to Be a Problem?

Moustafa Bayoumi read from his new book: How Does it Feel to be a Problem? Being Young and Arab in American (Penguin 2008) at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts sponsored by ArteEast
Yasmin Dwedar joined the reading to share her story. Zohra Saed moderated the panel. Livia Alexander, Executive Director of ArteEast and Michelle Levy, Program Director of EFA Project Space coordinated the event.

The book has received fantastic reviews and its only been out a month! UpSet Press encourages you to read this book and share it with your friends. It is one of the most sensitively written books about the Arab American experience in Brooklyn. We love it so much, we teach it in our classrooms! And our students loved it enough to come out and show their support.

Here are some photos from the event:

Moustafa Bayoumi reading at the beautiful EFA Gallery

Zohra, Moustafa and Yasmin

Yasmin says "Its creepy how exact his description of my high school experience was in the book. It was as if he was sitting on my shoulder witnessing everything I went through at the time."

Post reading schmoozing:
Yasmin speaks to students from Hunter College who came out to support.

Moustafa and the line of admirers.

Notice the Constitutional Law book on the chair! Yasmin is in her first year of Law School, continuing to sharpen the skills she developed in High School fighting for her rights in New York's Public School system.

Livia Alexander, Executive Director/Co-Founder of ArteEast and friends. (Livia is in blue)

Here is a photo of some of the members who make up the stories in Moustafa Bayoumi's book.

(Photos by Zohra Saed)

Moustafa Bayoumi at the Park Slope branch of Barnes & Noble (August 20th Book Release Reading)

Friday, September 5, 2008

August Class Trip: Chanika Svetvilas at Brooklyn Public Library

In August, Zohra took her Asian Americans in the U.S. class to visit Chanika Svetvilas' Journeys exhibit at the Brooklyn Public Library (Grand Army Plaza) on August 20th.

Chanika Svetvilas shares the interactive portions of her exhibit with the students.

Tara Bhattacharya-Moore takes notes in front of the suitcase that said My Side and then flipped to be Your Side

In the pockets of the suitcases Chanika had taken apart to sew onto the walls were notes that held visitors wishes and aspirations. Nia Taylor reads one wish out loud:

Hazem and Gigi listen to Chanika explain this piece The Grass is Greener on the Other Side

Exxon origami flowers...

Jean Singh poses with the Exxon flowers.

Class Photo: We are all in a suitcase, get it?

Thank you Chanika!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

August UpSet Press Poetry Group Meeting

Denise Galang and Sean Ohanlon hosted the August 2008 Poetry Group Meeting at their beautiful home in Brooklyn. After a lovely Vegetarian BBQ, the group settled in for some indepth reading and critique of each other's work. We are lucky at UpSet to have this family atmosphere to nourish our poetry manuscripts. This group has been meeting for the past three years.

Poets: Jenny Husk, Sean O'Hanlon and Denise Galang

Poet: Nicholas Powers, author of Theater of War (UpSet Press 2006)

Poet: Robert Booras, Founding Editor of UpSet Press

Poet: Denise Galang checks up a word in the dictionary

Poets: Nicholas Powers and Jenny Husk look over a prose-poem

Bringing Who We Love into the Classroom!

Zohra Saed, editor at Up-Set Press, has been introducing her students to some lovely people.

Viamoana Niumeitolu of Mahina Movement visited her Asian American Literature and Postcolonial Literature courses at Hunter College in July 2008:

Moana wakes up the 10am class

Student Amani was so moved by Moana's talk and performance that she said she wished her friends in Kuwait could see Moana's performance

Moana talks about what makes her work postcolonial in the next class

Thank you Moana!

This visit was after the students had seen her one woman show: Tongue In Paint
(which was absolutely riveting)