1997 Participants

Jorge Eduardo ACCAME (born in Buenos Aires, 1956) teaches Greek at the Jujuy National University and writes essays, articles, poems and short fiction for two newspapers in northern Argentina, El Pregon and El Tribuno. He studied literature at the Catholic University in Buenos Aires and attended a year-long seminar on folkloric literature at the University of Urbino in Italy. He is the author of two poetry collections, Punk y circo (1989) and Golja (1995); five short story collections, among them Dia de pesca ("A Day of Fishing", 1990); Cuarteto en el monte ("Wild Country Quartet", 1993); and El mejor tema de los '70 ("The Top Hit of the Seventies", 1996); and an award-winning theatre work, Chingoil Compani, Surinam ataca (1996). He has appeared in more than ten anthologies. Among his honors are the first prize for Dia de pesca from the Banco de Accion Social, the 1996 "Iris Marga" prize for drama, and numerous awards for his books for children. He also translates from classical Greek and Latin; in addition to his native Spanish, he speaks German, Italian, and Quicha. His participation is supported jointly by the Fundaci-n Antorchas, the US Information Agency, and the IWP.

Zakaria ARIFFIN (born in Kuantan, 1952) is research officer and language planning officer at the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka literary organization of Malaysia. He also teaches scriptwriting and drama part time at the National Art Academy in Kuala Lumpur and is a freelance writer/director for theatre and television. He is the author of ten plays, among them The Opera House (1988), which received multiple national awards; books for children and young adults; twenty scripts for documentary video, and eighty essays, works of criticism and reviews, including co-authorship of A History of Modern Malay Literature, vol. 2 (1992), Introduction to Malay Traditional Arts (1992); he edited Modern ASEAN Plays: Malaysia (1994). He holds the BA (hons.) from the Universiti Sains Malaysia in Penang. The Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka Malaysia is his sponsor.

BEKES Pal (born in Budapest, 1956) is chief editor of literature and theatre at Hungarian Television (MTV), and as a well-established playwright is regularly commissioned to translate and to stage plays with English-language origins. He received his training in Hungarian language and literature, English language and literature, and comparative literature at Eotvos Lorand University, and held a Fulbright Fellowship at Columbia University in 1992-93. He is a member of the Hungarian Writers' Union and PEN. Mr. Bekes has published ten books, several novels and collections of short fiction and plays. He is supported by a grant from the United States Information Agency.

CHANG Ta-chun 张大春(born in Taipei, 1957) is a lecturer in the Chinese Language & Literature Department of Fu Jen Catholic University, where he teaches a course on the modern novel, using mostly American novels; he writes about literature for two major newspapers and was previously editor of the prestigious China Times weekly and editor-in- chief of the China Times Express Literature Supplement. From 1993 to 1996 he was a television producer and host of a book review program. Although he is only 40, Taiwan critics describe Prof. Chang as the "master of the novel," and point to his characteristic play on language. Several of his works have appeared in English, French, and German editions, notably his fiction collection, Hi-Hsi, the Patriot (1993). His works span multiple genres: he has published works of science fiction, humor, children's literature, historical fiction, political satire, and horror. His literary criticism includes such titles as "Dr. Jekyll Hides" (1991) and "The Anti-Oedipus of Literature" (1995). Prof. Chang is an appointee of the US Information Agency.

Lourdes Elizabeth ESPINOLA Wiezell (poet; born in Asunción, 1954) is considered one of the three most important women writers in Paraguay, and ranks in her nation's top ten among all authors. A freelance journalist for cultural affairs and a professor at the University of the North, Dr. Espinola is a leading force in the study of U. S. literature in Paraguay's institutes of higher education. She has published six books of poetry, one of them a bilingual edition in the United States, as well as numerous scholarly papers on such topics as the intertextual approach to Paraguayan women's literature. Her latest collection is La Estrategia del Caracol, which has been praised as "a sincere manifestation of the affectionate impulse, of sensual fire, decanted with precise intensity." The daughter of a renowned Paraguayan writer, she followed her father's advice to learn an economically secure trade and has a private dental practice. She is participating in the program as a grantee of the US Information Agency.

Tibor Nicholas Elek FISCHER (born in Stockport, 1959) has been described by England's Daily Telegraph as "one of the most brilliant novelists of his generation." His parents, both professional basketball players, emigrated from Hungary to England in 1956; Tibor Fischer grew up in Bromley, South London, and studied Latin and French at Cambridge. He subsequently worked for television companies and newspapers in England, and in Budapest from 1988 to 1990. His first novel, Under the Frog, was rejected by 50 British and 12 American publishers before it came out in 1992; it won the Betty Trask Award the same year and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1993. Granta magazine listed him as one of the twenty best young British novelists of 1993; his second novel, The Thought Gang, published to wide acclaim in 1994, is being made into a movie. His work moves rapidly to ever expanding recognition: his most recent novel, The Collector Collector, is a "literary lions" selection in the July 1997 Book-of-the-Month Club listings. This novel narrated by a 6000-year-old self-proclaimed "bowl with soul" is enjoying wide distribution in this country through Henry Holt. The US Information Agency is providing Mr. Fischer's support at the IWP.

Sergio GOMEZ (born in Concepción, 1962) is literary editor of the supplement Zona de Contacto for Santiago's leading newspaper, El Mercurio. One of the literary leaders of his generation, Mr. Gomez is the author of two short story collections, Adi-s, Carlos Marx, nos vemos en el Cielo ('Goodbye, Karl Marx, We'll See You in Heaven'; 1992), Partes del cuerpo que no se tocan ('Don't Touch These Body Parts'; 1997); a novel, Vidas Ejemplares ('Exemplary Lives'; 1994); and he edited, with 1994 Chilean IWP participant Alberto Fuguet, two anthologies, Cuentos con Walkman (1993) and McOndo (1996). His play Extra-as Costumbres Orales was staged by Teatro La Feria in 1996, and won the Premio Concurso Nacional de Dramaturga; he adapted and directed Palomita Blanca for Teatro Arena in 1997. Vidas Ejemplares was a finalist for the prestigious Romulo Gallegos Prize, and Adios Carlos Marx... received recognition from the Municipality of Santiago. At the University of Iowa, he plans to complete a second novel, as well as work on television adaptations of stories by young Chilean authors. He is here through a grant from the Fundaci-n Andes.

Arturo José GUTIERRÉZ Plaza (born in Caracas, 1962) is director general for the highly respected Rómulo Gallegos Latin American Studies Center (CELARG). Trained in systems engineering at the Simon Bolivar University and a member of the Venezuelan Engineer's Association, Mr. Gutierrez also holds the MA in Latin American literature from SBU; he took several months of English studies at Chapel Hill in North Carolina and at Oxford. His publications include the poetry collection Al Margen de las Hojas ('To the Page Margins'; 1991), which won several awards; and a forthcoming collection, Common Purpose, which received the Third Literary Biennial "Mariano Picon Salas" prize. He is the co-author/editor of two anthologies, and many of his articles have appeared in national newspapers and magazines. Mr. Gutierrez is widely traveled and has participated in numerous literary congresses and workshops. He is a founding member and editor of Aljamia magazine and belongs to the Pequeña Venecia editorial group. Mr. Gutierrez is taking part in the program through the US Information Agency.

Bernadette HALL (born in Central Otago, 1945) is the author of four poetry collections: Heartwood (Caxton Press, 1989); Of Elephants etc (untold press, 1990); The Persistent Levitator (Victoria University Press, 1994), and Still Talking (forthcoming, to be launched at the Christchurch Arts Festival, July 1997). The Persistent Levitator was shortlisted for the New Zealand Book Awards in 1995. Her plays have been performed in theaters in New Zealand and produced on National NZ Radio; Glad and the Angels was winner of the Aoraki Festival Playwriting Competition. Since 1991, Ms. Hall has been the poetry editor of Takahe magazine and currently teaches at Hagley Community College in Christchurch; she directed the Creative Writing Summer School at Canterbury University and taught many writing workshops in Christchurch, Wellington, and Dunedin. She has also performed her poetry at various book festivals, exploring the "communal possibilities of poetry" through collaboration with an Irish uillean pipe player and music composers. Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies, among them the Oxford Book of New Zealand Poetry (1997). The Arts Council of New Zealand/Toi Aotearoa is providing joint support with the IWP for her participation in the program.

Kornel HAMVAI (born in Budapest, 1969) has had his first, prizewinning play stag‚ed at one of Hungary's most celebrated theaters; this play ,The Shooting Party, won a drama competition on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian revolution. His novel, Linesman Marton is Cold (Budapest, 1995) received the 1995 Sandor Brody Prize for Best First Book in Hungarian literature. His translations cover a range of contemporary works: the poems of Derek Walcott, Charles Simic; fiction by John Berendt, Richard Preston (The Hot Zone), and Stephen King; plays by Caryl Churchill and Thomas Middleton. Mr. Hamvai holds the MA in English literature and linguistics from Elte University, and did a year of graduate research at Oxford. He is currently editor of a literary periodical at the Eotvos Kollegium and of a journal of linguistic studies at Elte University. He was appointed to the program by the US Information Agency.

HAN Ki (born in Seoul, 1959) is an assistant professor at Ansung National Univversity and recently joined Literature and Thought magazine. His publications include Literature and Society at a Turning Point (1991) and At the Threshold of Rationalism (1997). He holds the Ph.D. in Korean modern literature from Seoul National University. The Korean Culture and Arts Foundation is providing his grant in cooperation with the IWP.

Christos HOMENIDES (born in Athens, 1966) is considered the new star of Greek letters. His novel, The Wise Kid (Athens, 1993; sixteenth edition in September 1996), is being made into a film in English, a step toward worldwide recognition. He is a member of the Education Council of the Center for Diplomatic Studies of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and is also an attorney-at-law; he graduated from the law school of the University of Athens in 1990. He is a regular contributor to the magazine Elle, where his interviews with famous authors, political figures, and scientists appear. Mr. Homenides is the IWP's first author from Greece in over a dozen years, and his participation reestablishes a strong Greek presence exemplified by such writers as Costas Tachtsis, Thanassis Valtinos, Katerina Anghelaki-Rooke, and Odysseus Elytis. The US Information Agency is providing the support for his participation.

Mawule Kuamvi KUAKUVI (born in Lome, 1945) is one of his nation's well known human rights activists. He is head of the division of academics in the registrar's office at the University of Benin, where he previously headed the department of philosophy, and continues to lecture in philosophy. Dr. Kuakuvi teaches the history of philosophy, moral and political philosophy, the philosophy of nature and ontology. He was educated at the University Urbaniana de Propaganda Fide in Rome, and received the M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Paris-Sorbonne. He belongs to the Association of Writers of Togo, the Human Rights League of Togo, and the Union of African Human Rights Leagues. He is interested in the American government system and how individual and collective rights are guaranteed and protected; his other interests include African American literature. He is here through the US Information Agency.

Goretti KYOMUHENDO (born in Hoima, 1965) coordinates the Uganda Women Writers' Association, which works with the production of literature on gender issues. Her first novel, The First Daughter (1996, is enjoying current popular success in Uganda, and she is at work on a manuscript about a young girl fleeing the Rwandan genocide, a project she hopes to complete at the University of Iowa. She holds a higher diploma in marketing from the National College of Business Studies, as well as a certificate in communication from Makerere University. The US Information Agency is sponsoring her at the IWP.

Ly Thi LAN (born in Binh Duong Province, 1957) is an English teacher, television editor, and researcher, and was previously an executive member of the Ho Chi Minh City Writers' Association. Among the publications in a prolific career are several collections of short stories: Singing Grass (1983); A Bit of Romance in the Rain (1987); Seeing Mountains in a Dream (19 ã91); Immigrants (1995). She has also written a novel, A Peaceful Place for Birds to Sing (1987); a non-fiction account of the Chinese living in South Vietnam (1994); and several books for children: Lantern Festival (1991); The Grown-Ups (1992); Whirled in the Rain (1993), and The Secret of the Black Lizard and Me (1996); Home in the Grass (1984) was the recipient of the first prize from the Vietnam Writers' Association. Ly Lan's participation in the IWP continues a connection begun in 1996 with fiction writer Phan Thi Vang Ahn. Her participation is supported by the US Information Agency.

Suchen Christine LIM (born in Perak, 1948) began writing fiction on her return to the National University of Singapore for a literature honours course and after teaching some years in a junior college. The result was a novel, Ricebowl (1984); in 1986, she co-authored a prizewinning short play, The Amah: a Portrait in Black and White. Her second novel, Gift from the Gods, appeared in 1990, and in 1992 she was the first writer to receive the Singapore Literature Prize for her third novel, Fistful of Colours. While studying for her post-graduate diploma in applied linguistics, she co-edited a literature series for secondary schools. She is presently a curriculum specialist in the Singapore Ministry of Education, and has also written teaching materials and several children's stories. Ms. Lim is here on a Fulbright grant through the Council for International Exchange of Scholars.

Peter MACSOVSZKY (born in Nove Zamky, 1966) is editor of the literary magazine Dotyky and a lecturer at the University of Constantine the Philosopher in Nitra, where he teaches esthetics and literary criticism; he is also working on the encyclopedia Belidiana at the Slovak Academy of Sciences. He has three published books of poetry, Fear of Utopia (1994); Ambit (1995); Autopsy (1997). He is also the translator of Richard Brautigan's The Revenge of the Lawn. He is particularly interested in the translation of modern American poetry, especially the Native American poetry. His other interests include Oriental philosophy and the history of fine arts. Mr. Macsovszky holds the M.A. from the faculties of English Language, the Arts, and Slovak Literature from the University of Constantine. He is at the IWP through the US Information Agency.

Mohamed Mohamed METWALLI Awad (born in Giza, 1970) is editor and translator at the teletext service of Egyptian television and editor of the Morning News Bulletin, English News Service, of Radio Cairo. He is also founder and editor of the literary magazine Al-Jarad. Mr. Metwalli's publications prove not only his talent but his fresh and challenging voice; in 1992 he received the "Yusuf al-Khal" prize for the best first poetry collection for Once Up 'on a Time, and the 1991 Rimbaud Prize for young poets given by Ibda magazine. His work is said to represent a major shift in contemporary literary values; he holds poetry readings throughout Egypt. He is also active in a local theater group, "Shrapnel," and collaborated with the American cultural affairs office at the 1996 Cairo International Experimental Theater Festival. Once Upon a Time was first published in Arabic in the United Kingdom in 1992; his poetry has also appeared in Lebanese publications and in English translation. He earned the BA in English from Cairo University in 1992 and took courses at the Egyptian Film Institute. The US Information Agency is providing his grant to the program.

Lilia Maria Clara Carriere MOMPLE (fiction writer; born in Ilha de Mozambique, 1935) is one of her country's best known writers; her works have been translated into English and appeared in African and Mozambican anthologies. She is also known for her participation in Mozambique's liberation movement: armed with a bachelor's degree in social work from Portugal, she was poised to lend a hand to a struggling post-colonial government at a time when there were few professionals in the country. She represented her country in numerous international meetings on cultural issues, including the UNESCO General Assembly in Paris. As the current president of the Mozambican Writers' Association (AEMO) General Assembly, she works actively toward promoting female authors and civic education. Her writing career spans the colonial, socialist and democratic cultural contexts of her country. Her literary publications include two novels, Neighbours (1995) and the forthcoming The Eyes of the Green Cobra, and a short story collection, Nobody Killed Shuhura (1989; subsequently translated into Italian and English). Her short story "Slum Dwelling" won the first prize in the literary contest of the centennial of Maputo in 1987. She is at the IWP through the US Information Agency.

Zyta ORYSZYN is the author of six novels that she describes as political-psychological works, among them Time of Illness, Time of Mourning and Illumination. Her work has appeared in an anthology of Polish women writers and deals with Stalinist times in Poland from the viewpoint of a child and teenager. Ms. Oryszyn was a journalist with the Solidarity weekly and in the underground press during Poland's time of great change, and she is currently a member of the Polish PEN and the Association of Polish Writers. She completed her studies in the philosophy faculty of Warsaw University in 1970. Her works have appeared in Hungarian and German translation. Her participation in the IWP is through a grant from the Alfred Jurzykowski Foundation.

Marina Anatolyevna PALEI (born in Leningrad Oblast, 1955) writes in a style that has been described as "covering a complete range of the most unpredictable possibilities," its scope traversing psychological realism and surrealism, its style moving "from expressionist lucidity to the sparkle of paradox." Her work as writer, critic, and translator has appeared in all the major journals of Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as in every anthology of Russian 20th-century prose. Critics have called the tale, "Caribia from the Obvodnoy Canal," one of the most striking and significant prose works of 1991; it was later nominated for the Russian Booker prize. Her prose has been translated into eight languages and published throughout Europe and North America. Ms. Palei received her academic training at the Leningrad Medical Institute and the Moscow Literary Institute; she is a member of the Union of Writers of Russia and the Russia PEN Center. The USIA is providing her grant to the IWP.

Guillermo QUINTERO Montano (born in Michoacan de Ocampo, 1940) is senior professor of American and English literature at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), and as a highly placed mentor to several generations of students, he has been instrumental in developing a good number of his country's current scholars, authors, translators, and researchers of American and British literature. He studied at Trinity College in Cambridge. He is the author of many scholarly texts, including The English Novel: Four Eighteenth Century Authors (1978); "Shakespeare: The Mirror and the Target" (1979); "Irony and Humor in Medieval Literature" (1983); currently in press is The Hero in the American Novel: from Herman Melville to Russell Banks. Prof. Quintero is presently working on a nonfiction work addressing life in big cities. His first novel Semper Fidelis (1994) is described as a Mexican novel about Vietnam, and tells of a Mexican student on scholarship at a US university who, to thank the United States for its generosity, enlists in the US Army during the Vietnam war. His participation in the IWP will be his first extensive visit to this country, and is supported by the US Information Agency.

Steve SHARRA (fiction writer, poet and children's author, Malawi; born in Ntcheu, 1971) is considered one of his country's bright and promising writers. His children's novel, Fleeing the War, won the British Council Write a Story competition and was published by Macmillan Malawi in 1996. He is presently editorial assistant for educational materials at the Malawi Institute of Education, acting president of the Malawi Writers Union, and was chairperson of the 1997 Malawi Book Fair & Literary Festival. He also belongs to the Copyright Society of Malawi and the Malawi PEN organization. A teacher by training and freelance journalist, Mr. Sharra has taught in primary schools and contributed articles to various publications and the radio, including the BBC. He is interested in familiarizing himself with US literary history while he is at the University of Iowa. His participation is supported by the US Information Agency.

Kirpal SINGH (fiction writer, poet, critic, Singapore; born in Singapore, 1949) is a leading figure in the literature of the ASEAN region. Dr. Singh is head of the Division of Literature and Drama at the Singapore National Institute of Education. His books include Singapore Potpourri (1970), Articulations (1972), Twenty Poems (1976), Palm Readings (1986), Critical Engagements (1986), Jaspal + 2 (1997). He has participated in several international literary festivals all over the world. He has also been Writer-in-Residence in many different universities. Forthcoming titles include Catwalking (1997) and Why Make Love Twice (1998). His works have been the subject of serious studies by critics internationally and he is today regarded as a major voice in the Indian Diaspora as well as in Southeast Asia. His participation is supported by the Lee Foundation of Singapore.

Adriana SZYMANSKA (poet, Poland; born in Torun, 1943) is a major Polish poet and a reviewer for the monthly Przeglad Powszechny. She is a graduate of the Nicolaus Copernicus University. Following her literary debut in 1969 with the collection Everyday Skies, she published six books of poetry; the most recent, Kamien przydrozny ('A Roadside Stone', 1993) came out of a publishing house that produced only two books of poetry that year: hers and Zbiegniew Herbert's. It was given the Booksellers' Association prize that year and the prestigious Sep Szarzynski award in 1994. Her work has been translated into eight languages; English translations are forthcoming in the Paris Review and Literary TriQuarterly. She is also the author of two books for children and a novel. Herbert has described her poetry as "superb, mature, rich and bitter fruit, poetry that is both kind and cruel." Ms. Szymanska's participation in the IWP is provided by the Kosciuszko Foundation, which also supported her residency in Berkeley this spring.

Jasmina TESANOVIC (scriptwriter, fiction writer, Yugoslavia; born in Belgrade, 1954) founded, with two other women, the first women's publishing house in Serbia in 1994. She writes, translates, and edits both non-fiction and fiction dealing with women's issues. She assisted in the production and writing of several films in Italy and Belgrade, worked on movies for Belgrade TV, and has given video art performances. Ms. Tesanovic edited The Suitcase, stories of women refugees (University of California Press, 1996), and is at work on a novel on women's history, language, and psychology that uses a combination of fables and anthropology. She received her training in modern letters at the Universitˆ Statale di Milano. She now teaches creative writing at Women's Studies of Belgrade. Her participation, which begins in November, is provided by ArtsLink/CEC Partners.

Marita Van Der Vyver

Aleksey Nikolayevich VARLAMOV (fiction writer, Russia; born in Moscow, 1963) is assistant professor of Russian literature at Moscow State University, and is considered one of the most interesting contemporary writers in Russia. Still in his early thirties, has has already received considerable recognition in Russia's literary circles; he was a winner of the Anti-Booker Prize in 1995 and received awards from the Moscow magazine Oktyabr (October) and from the German club Lege Artis e V. He has written three books and has published short stories prolifically in Moscow as well as in Germany and Japan. His works are also forthcoming in Great Britain and the Netherlands. He is a graduate of the department of Russian language and literature at Moscow State University, and is now one of the leading specialists in the department. He has served as visiting professor at the University of Rostock (Germany) and the University of Ghent. In addition to English and his native Russian, he speaks Spanish and French. He is at the IWP on a grant from the US Information Agency.

Monica VELÁSQUEZ (poet, essayist, literary critic, Bolivia; born in La Paz, 1972) is a rising young writer whose latest book of poetry Tres nombres para un lugar ('Three Names for a Place') has garnered excellent reviews. Her book reviews, which run in major local newspapers, have a wide following. She has taken part in international literary conferences, including a fellowship to the University of Alicante (Spain), where she led a three-month seminar on Bolivian poetry, and the "Jalla" conference in Argentina (one of the most important annual events in Latin American literature). Ms. Velásquez now teaches at San Andres National University in La Paz, where she is also doing graduate work. She is at the IWP through the US Information Agency.

Aura María VIDALES Ibarra de Guerrero (poet, Mexico; born in Mexico City, 1958) is deeply engaged in the Mexican cultural scene as a television reporter-journalist, the organizer of many cultural events and literary gatherings, and one of the leading poets of her generation. Among her numerous involvements, Ms. Vidales was previously curator at the National Autonomous University of Mexico's Museum del Chopo and a founder of the newspaper Question. Her poems have appeared in several anthologies both in her country and in the United States. Her publications include these poetry collections: Ensueño ('Illusions'; 1984); Poemario: Balada para un viento suave ('Poems: Ballades for a Gentle Wind'; 1990) Cantos para el guerrero ('Poems for the Warrior'; 1997); and a forthcoming collection of poems for children. She is the first holder of a scholarship from the National Council for Culture and the Arts (CNCA) to write poetry, and is a founding member of the World Association of Women Journalists and Writers (AMPE). She received the BA in journalism from Mexico's National School of Journalism, and has taken various advanced courses in democracy and human rights. The US Information Agency is supporting her IWP participation.

 

Happening Now

Find Us Online