NCORE | Home E-mail  

Asian Pacific Islander Caucus
Promoting & Empowering Asian & Pacific Islander Americans

  Professor Shawn Wong, NCORE 2008 (Orlando) keynote speaker API Caucus   


Steering Com

Shawn Wong

We were privileged to have Professor Shawn Wong as the NCORE 2008 (Orlando) keynote speaker. The title of his speech was "The Secret Life of an Asian American Writer."

Background Information

Shawn Wong is Professor of English and Director of the University Honors Program at the University of Washington in Seattle. Professor Shawn Wong’s second novel, American Knees, was published by Simon & Schuster in 1995 (Scribner paperback, 1996; reissued by University of Washington Press, 2005). The film version of American Knees, titled “Americanese” will be released in theaters nationally by IFC Films in 2008 (directed by Eric Byler).

The film won several film festival awards and Wong served as Associate Producer. Wong’s first novel, Homebase (Reed and Cannon, 1979; reissued by Plume/NAL, 1990 and again by the University of Washington Press in 2008), won both the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award and the 15th Annual Governor’s Writers Day Award of Washington.

He is also the co-editor and editor of six Asian American and American multicultural literary anthologies including the pioneering anthology Aiiieeeee! An Anthology of Asian American Writers (Howard University Press, 1974; reprinted in four different editions, most recently by Meridian in 1997) and, The Big Aiiieeeee! An Anthology of Chinese America and Japanese America in Literature (Meridian/NAL, 1991), Literary Mosaic: Asian American Literature (HarperCollins, 1995), and Asian Diasporas: Cultures, Identities, Representations (Hong Kong University Press, 2004). He is co-editor of Before Columbus Foundation Fiction/Poetry Anthology: Selections from the American Book Awards, 1980-1990, two volumes of contemporary American multicultural poetry and fiction (W. W. Norton, 1992). Wong has also been awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship and a Rockefeller Foundation residency in Italy. He has won several writing awards including a first prize from the Society of Professional Journalists in the humor category in 1997. Wong was featured in the 1997 PBS documentary, “Shattering the Silences” and in the “Bill Moyers’ PBS documentary, “Becoming American: The Chinese Experience,” in 2003. Wong also serves as a consulting and contributing editor for Transtext(e)s /Transcultures, a joint French and Chinese journal published by Université Jean Moulin (Lyon, France) and University of Henan (China).

Professor Wong received his undergraduate degree in English at the University of California at Berkeley and a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing at San Francisco State University. Professor Wong has taught at several colleges and universities since 1972, including Mills College, University of California at Santa Cruz and San Francisco State University. He is currently Professor of English and Director of the University Honors Program at the University of Washington where he served as Chair of the Department of English from 1997 to 2002 and Director of the Creative Writing Program from 1995 to 1997. In addition, Professor Wong has taught at the Universität Tübingen (Germany), Université Jean Moulin (Lyon), and at the University of Washington Rome Center (Italy).