Thursday, September 08, 2016

Bettering American Poetry 2015

Proud to have my poem "A Whole History" (from Steep Tea) included in the groundbreaking anthology Bettering American Poetry 2015.

From my interview: "I knew people back home would be pleased and proud that a Singaporean was being published by the esteemed UK publisher Carcanet Press. I wanted people to know, even if they don’t open the book, that this Singaporean is proudly gay. The anti-sodomy law, an inheritance from the British, is still on the books, and the LGBT community in Singapore still faces all kinds of discrimination and prejudice. If the country wishes to embrace my book, it will have to embrace my sexuality. I also self-identify as postcolonial for political reasons. Not only do I wish to assert my independence against the British empire of letters, I also want to protest the neo-colonial apparatuses of oppression inherited and exercised by the Singaporean state. These apparatuses include not only the anti-sodomy law, but also state control of the press, and detention without trial. Formal colonialism is over but its tutelage remains strong in the minds of the governing class. Singaporeans are still struggling against the long shadow of colonialism. This is not to mention our vulnerability to American political and cultural imperialism."

No comments: