Where We Find Ourselves: Writing the Diaspora – a conversation

  • Online
  • February 22
  • 19:00 - 21:00
Event Website

Join seven Arachne Press poets to talk about diaspora experience and the power and significance of creative response.

Following on from publication of Where We Find Ourselves: Poems and Stories of Maps and Mapping from UK Writers of the Global Majority we are gathering together seven poets and writers who contributed to the anthology, to continue the conversation that the book began.

Chaired by Nikita Chadha, our panel will include Alex Williams, Gita Ralleigh, Seni Seneviratne, Des Mannay, Marina Sanchez and Catherine Okoronkwo. The panel will consider questions such as: How important is your diaspora identity to your writing? and As a writer, where do you feel like you belong?

Where We Find Ourselves contains stories and poems from 48 UK writers of the Global Majority, from African, Asian, Middle Eastern, Caribbean, South American, Chinese and Malay communities, writing about maps and mapping. These are stories and poems of finding oneself and getting lost, colonialism and diaspora, childhood exploration and adult homecoming.

Publishing this book was the begining of a conversation for Arachne Press and we’re really pleased to give our authors a platform to continue thinking and speaking about what it means to write the diaspora, in an event designed for writers, readers, students, academics and anyone interested in the importance of diverse diaspora voices being heard.

“There’s a power in our creativity, the diaspora. We walk a tightrope between two worlds, and yet we never fully belong to either. Sometimes all we are is “the other”, placed into a box within someone else’s mind. That’s why our art is so important. It shifts expectations, breaks free from limitations and allows us a safe space to understand and explore our experiences.

I’m excited to be chairing this symposium – the event will begin an important and ongoing conversation about the significance of our diaspora identities and how those identities intersect with our art and writing.” – Nikita Chadha

This is an open event – we want to hear your voices too and there will be plenty of break-out and Q and A time, to encourage you to share your thoughts, reflections and experiences – and, if you would like, to write about them.

Different breakout rooms will allow time for shared conversation and deeper exploration of the ideas raised by the panel or provide an opportunity to attend a short writing session/ workshop.