Last Wednesday, February 18th, Amarnath Ravva and Andrew Lam joined USC’S APASS DESI Project and the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity to read from their works and discuss Asian-American identity. Amar opened with a reading from AMERICAN CANYON and accompanying video clips which are featured as stills in his debut. Andrew Lam followed with readings from BIRDS OF PARADISE LOST and PERFUME DREAMS. The two then engaged in conversation about their journeys to writing and the role their heritage has played in them.
Both Lam and Ravva share backgrounds in science and entered college with dreams of becoming a physician and chemist respectively. They shared moving details about their personal lives and discoveries of their love for writing. Lam described a heartbreak in college, explaining that the lost love felt more like losing a country; he felt exiled. He related this to his first heartbreak, which he suffered when he heard about the fall of Saigon. Ravva told the story of a trip he took to the Sierra Nevada after requesting leave from his university. With only a few dollars in his pocket and no financial support from his parents, he went to a casino and won $300 on his first shot at the slots. This money carried him through the summer, which he spent writing.
What an incredible event! Check out the photos below if you missed it!