Hailed by Ishmael Reed as "one of our brightest talents," Lee Ann Roripaugh's fourth collection of poems maps the illusory and ephemeral connection between identities and language.
Based on sources as diverse as Heian-period Japanese women writers and the world of science fiction, and drawing on her own experience as a second-generation Japanese American, Dandarians explores a series of "word betrayals"--English words misunderstood in transmission from her Japanese mother that came to take on symbolic ramifications in her early years. Co-opting and repurposing the language of knowledge and of misunderstanding, and dialoguing in original ways with notions of diaspora and hybrid identities, these poems demonstrate the many ways we attempt to be understood, culminating in an experience of aural awe.
At once wonderfully lyrical and strikingly acute, Dandarians will further establish Lee Ann Roripaugh as one of the most important and original voices in contemporary Asian American literature.
About the Author
A second-generation Japanese American, Lee Ann Roripaugh writes poetry that deals with themes of culture and identity in all its forms. She has received numerous awards, serves as editor in chief of the "South Dakota Review," and directs the creative writing program at the University of South Dakota. She lives in Vermillion, SD.