CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
300 Plaza Centre One
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Sept. 5, 2001
(NOTE TO EDITORS: International Writing Program director
Christopher Merrill may be reached through <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
or by phone at 319-335-2609. The writers are living at the Iowa House, 319-335-3513.)
(NOTE TO BROADCASTERS: Viet Huu Tran is pronounced vee-ET
hoo TRAHN. Rashid Rehman is pronounced rah-SHEED RAY-mahn.)
IWP, Writers' Workshop launch joint readings series
The University of Iowa International Writing Program (IWP)
and the Iowa Writers' Workshop will launch a series of weekly joint readings
with a free event at 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 9, in the Prairie Lights bookstore
at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Each reading will pair an established
foreign writer in residence at the IWP with a graduate student in the Writers'
Workshop, America's premier creative writing degree program.
The inaugural reading will feature IWP participants Viet
Huu Tran from Vietnam and Rashid Rehman from Malaysia, and Danielle Proussoni,
a second-year graduate student in the fiction writing program of the Iowa
Rehman is the author of "Malaysia Journey," a best selling
book that presents, in alternating fictional and nonfiction segments, reflections
on Malaysian society since independence, and on the relations among Malaysia's
three major ethnic groups. He also wrote "Pangkor: Treasure of the Strait,"
and he is currently at work on another novel. As a journalist, Rehman served
as senior writer for Bermuda Business and Asiaweek, and lead writer for the
Straits Times. He holds a bachelor of science in marine biology from the University
of Swansea (Wales).
Tran writes poetry exploring the sensibility of post-1975
Vietnamese youth, and their complex attitudes toward contemporary Vietnam
in transition. He has received a number of awards for his careers in poetry
and in journalism. He is editor of the Sunday literary and arts supplement
of the Tien Phong newspaper, and also writes for other leading journals directed
toward youth. A miscellany including his critical work is being published
early next year.
Proussoni was a natural reading partner for Tran because
she has written fiction partially set in Vietnam.
Thirty writers representing 24 countries are now in residence
at the IWP through Nov. 20. the IWP was the first international writers residency
at a university, and it remains unique in world literature. Over the years,
nearly a thousand writers from more than 115 countries have completed residencies
in the program.
Like most IWP residency groups, the 2001 community is
a mix of poets, fiction writers, screenwriters, playwrights, journalists,
essayists and critics. Many of the IWP writers will travel from Iowa City
to present lectures, symposia and readings at other campuses in Iowa and throughout
the country, and to visit places of cultural or historical interest.
The IWP is staffed and housed by the University of Iowa.
IWP writers have been financed by the United States State Department, through
bilateral agreements with numerous countries; by grants given by cultural
institutions and governments abroad; and by private funds that are donated
by a variety of American corporations, foundations and individuals.
To learn more about the IWP and the Iowa Writers' Workshop,
visit <http://www.uiowa.edu/~iwp> and <http://www.uiowa.edu/~iww>
the on the World Wide Web:. For UI arts information and calendar updates,
visit <www.uiowa.edu/artsiowa>. To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact