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University of Iowa News Release

July 16, 2003

WSUI 'Live From Prairie Lights' Series Adds Final Summer Reading

"Live from Prairie Lights," the series of broadcast readings hosted by Julie Englander on University of Iowa radio station WSUI, AM 910, has added a final reading to its summer schedule: poet Marilyn Chin, a summer faculty member of the UI Writers' Workshop, at 8 p.m. Thursday, July 24.

The reading will be a free event in the Prairie Lights bookstore at 15 S. Dubuque St. in downtown Iowa City. Listen on the internet at

Chin is an alumna of the Writers' Workshop, and while at the UI she was also a translator for the International Writing Program.

Born in Hong Kong, Chin was raised in Oregon. Adrienne Rich wrote that the poems in Chin's latest volume, "Rhapsody in Plain Yellow," "are unmistakable evidence of the universal reach of the particular -- when the art is powerful, uncompromised, and unerring as hers." "Rhapsody in Plain Yellow" has just been released in paperback.

Critic Donna Seaman wrote for Booklist, "Chin paces the line demarcated by the words 'Chinese American' like a caged tiger, fury just barely held in check one moment, miasma rising dank and poisonous the next. . . Impeccable form holds seething emotion as Chin remembers her parents and ponders death, love and aloneness, expectations and failings, exile and abandonment, and the suffering reserved specifically for women. She looks from East to West and back again, restless, critical, poised for flight or fight but persuaded by the muse to hold her ground and find the words for all that boils within and without, all that makes being human so urgent and confounding."

Chin's poetry has appeared in the Iowa Review, the Paris Review, and Parnassus, and her other collections include "The Phoenix Gone," "The Terrace Empty" and "Dwarf Bamboo," which was nominated for the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award. She also co-edited "Dissident Song: A Contemporary Asian American Anthology" with fellow UI alum David Wong Louie.

She has been the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, two Fulbright Fellowships, a Stegner Fellowship, four Pushcart Prizes and a Mary Roberts Rinehart Award. Chin is currently on the faculty of the Master of Fine Arts program at San Diego State University.

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STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073,