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Join Us Tonight, May 27: National Book Festival Presents “The Art of the Memoir”

The following post was written by Rob Casper, head of Poetry and Literature in Literary Initiatives.

Image of Cathy Park Hong and Wayétu Moore

Tonight at 7 p.m. ET, poet Cathy Park Hong (“Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning”) and novelist Wayétu Moore (“The Dragons, the Giant, the Women”) discuss how their memoirs give voice to history and speak to the present moment.

The Library of Congress kicked off its National Book Festival Presents series in fall of 2019, and throughout the past two seasons we’ve featured an amazing array of authors both in-person and online. I’m thrilled to let you know the final series event for 2020/2021, called “The Art of the Memoir,” is a real knockout.

For this event, we brought together two very different writers—with two powerful books. Cathy Park Hong wrote three books of poetry before she turned to prose with “Minor Feelings: An Asian American Memoir.” Wayétu Moore published her first novel in 2018, and two years later followed up with her memoir “The Dragons, the Giant, the Women.” Both have been unabashed successes, garnering major awards and “best of the year” nods and even a spot on bestseller lists! And both showed the flexibility of the memoir format.

Tune in tonight at 7 p.m. ET on the Library’s Facebook page or YouTube channel (and available afterward on the Library’s website) to learn more about how Hong’s memoir, “a hybrid collection of cultural criticism, memoir, history—with a dash of theory thrown in,” allowed her to be personal; how Moore “genre-hopped” as a novelist but wrote a fictionalized account of her mother’s experience in her memoir; and much much more.


  1. Hasan Diriye Abdi Farah
    May 27, 2021 at 12:35 pm

    I would like to,participating to night thanks Great God our Creator.

  2. Stephen Roberts
    May 28, 2021 at 9:56 am

    When I ponder writing a memoir, I ask myself, “Who cares?” How does a writer get beyond that point? I can imagine only a handful of readers who would be interested in my memoir. Even they may grow weary reading it.

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