Issues of race and culture continue to make themselves relevant in today’s headlines and reverberate on our streets. Those issues permeate all fabric of society and the arts is not immune. In two different but related cases, issues of representation/misrepresentation of writers of color in American literature continue to be an ongoing concern. Local poet Jane Wong addresses the recent controversy surrounding the yearly anthology, “Best American Poetry,” when a white man using an Asian pseudonym had his poem accepted for this nationally known publication guest-edited by noted Seattle poet/novelist Sherman Alexie. In her response, she shifts the focus toward the five real Asian American poets in this year’s anthology. Also, Seattle writer Donna Miscolta takes issue with a recent anthology of Seattle writers she felt gave short shrift to local writers of colors. She wrote a letter originally published in the Seattle Review of Books on October 1, 2015, a recent online publication on books and literature that has provided a lively and stimulating dialogue to our local literary scene. More letters were followed by Paul Constant and Kathleen Alcala and reactions continued on social media as well. The letter is reprinted with the permission of Seattle Review of Books. Stay tuned as the dialogue on these issues will surely continue.

Read Jane Wong’s piece here and Donna Miscolta’s piece here.

For more arts, click here

Previous articleCommentary: Reflections by and about white people
Next articleColumn: Okinawan long term care—A life totally focused on others