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Join the May Anti-Racism Reads event which will feature a group discussion on the book Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning. Looking for an additional opportunity to discuss Minor Feelings? Join us for a midway check-in conversation Tuesday, April 25 on Teams with Jermal Jones and Sarah Menzies.
We have copies of this book available at no cost to reduce barriers to participation. Please indicate when you register if you would like a copy.
April 25 event (virtual midway check-in conversation)
Jermal A. Jones, Associate Director, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Access, University of Waterloo Library
Sarah Menzies, Anti-racism Specialist, Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-racism (EDI-R)
When: Tuesday, April 25 | 1 to 2 p.m.
May 30 event (in-person facilitated discussion)
Facilitator: Sarah Menzies, Anti-racism Specialist, EDI-R
Guest: Janice Jo Lee, artist
When: Tuesday, May 30 | noon to 1 p.m.
Where: Dana Porter Learning lab, third floor
Find the book: Library's catalogue (Omni), W Store
About Minor Feelings
Poet and essayist Cathy Park Hong fearlessly and provocatively blends memoir, cultural criticism, and history to expose fresh truths about racialized consciousness in America. Part memoir and part cultural criticism, this collection is vulnerable, humorous, and provocative — and its relentless and riveting pursuit of vital questions around family and friendship, art and politics, identity and individuality, will change the way you think about our world.
Binding these essays together is Hong’s theory of “minor feelings.” As the daughter of Korean immigrants, Cathy Park Hong grew up steeped in shame, suspicion, and melancholy. She would later understand that these “minor feelings” occur when American optimism contradicts your own reality — when you believe the lies you’re told about your own racial identity. Minor feelings are not small, they’re dissonant — and in their tension Hong finds the key to the questions that haunt her.
With sly humor and a poet’s searching mind, Hong uses her own story as a portal into a deeper examination of racial consciousness in America today. This intimate and devastating book traces her relationship to the English language, to shame and depression, to poetry and female friendship. A radically honest work of art, Minor Feelings forms a portrait of one Asian American psyche — and of a writer’s search to both uncover and speak the truth
In her role as the Anti-Racism Specialist at the EDI-R office, Sarah Menzies works to address and eliminate structural barriers faced by Black, Indigenous, and racialized members of our campus. Her work involves supporting campus members with navigating University policies and procedures, building strong partnerships with students, staff, and community supports, and ensuring that all initiatives within the Anti-Racism unit intentionally reflect anti-racist principles and approaches. She graduated from Western University with a BA in English Literature and was awarded a SSHRC Canada Graduate Scholarship in 2019 to pursue her MA in English with a Specialization in Transitional Justice and Post-Conflict Reconstruction. Outside of work, you’ll likely find Sarah with a piping hot cup of tea and a good book, or spending quality time with her cat, Luna.
Janice Jo Lee
Janice Jo Lee is a dynamic artist. She is a second generation Korean-Canadian settler based in Tkaronto (Toronto), Ontario. She is a folk-soul-jazz singer songwriter, composer-sound designer, spoken word poet, theatre maker, and arts and anti-oppression facilitator, working with universities and organizations such as Folk Alliance International, University of Toronto School of Social Work, and Vancouver Poetry House.
Lee’s artwork has always been one with her activism. Her songs, poems and plays are immersed in issues of gender empowerment, community, climate change, the environment and antiracism. On stage she performs spoken word pieces and songs built on layers of cascading harmonies. The first single “Here I Am” from her new album, Ancestor Song, is out now with the full album coming out later in 2023.