The US Launch of UNION

The US launch of UNION – featuring Alvin Pang, Ravi Shankar, Sharon Dolin, Jee Leong Koh, and Amanda Lee Koe

Sunday, September 27, 5.30pm to 6.30pm, Madison Square Park, NYC, a part of Singapore: Inside Out.


From the website: “To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Singapore’s independence and the 15th anniversary of celebrated literary journal Drunken Boat (USA), noted poets and literary editors Alvin Pang (Singapore) and Ravi Shankar (USA) bring you an exciting new cross-cultural anthology of writing: UNION. At the US launch of the anthology and to celebrate literary friendships between Singapore and New York, they are joined at this session by poet Sharon Dolin (USA), poet Jee Leong Koh (Singapore) and writer Amanda Lee Koe (Singapore).

Published in English and to be released worldwide, the UNION anthology brings together over 130 writers from Singapore, the US and beyond, including Cultural Medallion and Pulitzer Prize winners, and features poetry, fiction, non-fiction, translation and criticism. UNION marks the extraordinary literary range and diversity and the many resonances – often overt and sometimes surprising – that connect our communities.”



Singapore: Inside Out


About Alvin Pang: Considered one of a new breed of young Singapore poets who emerged in the 1990s, Alvin Pang is a poet, writer, editor and translator listed in the Oxford Companion to Modern Poetry in English (2nd Edition, 2013). He has appeared in numerous major festivals and publications worldwide, and represented Singapore at Poetry Parnassus – part of the 2012 London Cultural Olympiad. Alvin’s recent publications include Tumasik: Contemporary Writing from Singapore (Autumn Hill, USA: 2010), What Gives Us Our Names (Math Paper Press:2011), Other Things and Other Poems (Brutal, Croatia: 2012) and When The Barbarians Arrive (Arc Publications, UK: 2012). Currently a Board Member of the University of Canberra’s International Poetry Studies Institute and a Fellow of the Iowa International Writing Program, he also directs The Literary Centre (Singapore), a non-profit inter-cultural initiative. His poems are characterised as being urban and cosmopolitan yet intimate in nature.

About Ravi Shankar: Founding editor and executive director of Drunken Boat, one of the world’s oldest electronic journals of the arts, Ravi Shankar is a recognised figure in the literature and publishing world. He has published or edited seven books and chapbooks of poetry, including the 2010 National Poetry Review Prize winner, Deepening Groove. He is currently chairman of the Connecticut Young Writers Trust, on the faculty of the first international MFA Program at City University of Hong Kong and a Professor of English at Central Connecticut State University.

About Jee Leong Koh: A Singapore poet and essayist living in New York City, Jee Leong Koh is the author of four books of poetry, including Steep Tea and The Pillow Book. He was most notably shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize, and as part of his commitment to introduce Singapore arts to an American audience, he runs the arts website Singapore Poetry, the Second Saturdays Reading Series and the Singapore Literature Festival in New York.

About Amanda Lee Koe: Amanda Lee Koe is the youngest-ever winner of the Singapore Literature Prize for her short story collection, Ministry of Moral Panic. Currently working on her first novel, Amanda is the fiction editor of Esquire Singapore by day and a graduate student pursuing a Master’s Degree in Fine Arts at Columbia University by night.

About Sharon Dolin: Sharon Dolin is the author of five poetry books, most notably Whirlwind and Burn and Dodge, which won the AWP Donald Hall Prize in Poetry. She is planning to launch her sixth poetry collection, Manual for Living, in 2016 (University of Pittsburgh Press), while Serious Pink, which explores the ongoing relationship and interplay between the visual and verbal arts, is being reissued by Marsh Hawk Press this year. She directs The Center for Book Arts Annual Poetry Chapbook Competition as well as Writing About Art in Barcelona, a 10-day creative writing workshop.



About Jee Leong Koh

My book of poems Steep Tea (Carcanet) was named a Best Book of 2015 by UK's Financial Times, and a Finalist by Lambda Literary. I also wrote three other books of poems and a book of zuihitsu. My work has been shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize, and translated into Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian and Latvian. Originally from Singapore, I live in New York City, where I edit the arts blog Singapore Poetry, and run the Second Saturdays Reading Series and the Singapore Literature Festival in NYC.

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