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Dipika Mukherjee: Dialect of Distant Harbors Book Launch

Saturday, October 15, 2022


3:00 pm-5:00 pm CT

South Asia Institute, 1925 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois

South Asia Institute Presents

Dipika Mukherjee: Book Launch and Panel Discussion
Saturday, October 15, 2022

Dipika Mukherjee
Dipika Mukherjee moved to Chicago from Shanghai in 2012 and spends a lot of time at the neighborhood Harold Washington Public Library. She is the author of the novels Shambala Junction and Ode to Broken Things, and the story collection, Rules of Desire. Her writing is included in The Best Small Fictions 2019 and appears in World Literature Today, Asia Literary Review, Del Sol Review, Chicago Quarterly Review, Newsweek, Los Angeles Review of Books, Hemispheres and Orion. She teaches at the Graham School at University of Chicago and at StoryStudio Chicago.

Dialect of Distant Harbors (Available for Purchase at Event)
This poetry collection explores themes of home, grieving, and kinship.

With wonder, empathy, and even rage, Dialect of Distant Harbors summons a shared humanity to examine issues of illness and family. Dipika Mukherjee’s poems redefine belonging and migration in a misogynistic and racist world. “A grievous vastness to this world,” she writes, “beyond human experience.”

As the world recovers from a global pandemic and the failure of modern government, these poems are incantations to our connections to the human family—whether in Asia, Europe, or the United States. Dialect of Distant Harbors focuses on what is most resilient in ourselves and our communities.


FAISAL MOHYUDDIN is a writer, artist, and educator. The child of immigrants from Pakistan, he is the author of The Displaced Children of Displaced Children, (Eyewear, 2018), which won the 2017 Sexton Prize in Poetry, and was selected as a 2018 Summer Recommendation of the Poetry Book Society and named a “highly commended” collection of the year by the Forward Arts Foundation; it went on to receive an Honorable Mention in the Association of Asian American Studies 2020 Book Award for Poetry. Faisal is also the author of the chapbook The Riddle of Longing (Backbone Press, 2017), and his work has received Prairie Schooner’s Edward Stanley Award, a Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Prize from the Illinois State Library, and an Illinois Arts Council Literary Award. His recent work appears in Poetry Magazine, Poet Lore, Kweli, The Margins, Pleiades, Chicago Quarterly Review, and RHINO. An alumnus of the U.S. Department of State’s Fulbright Teachers for Global Classrooms program, Faisal is a graduate of Carleton College, Northwestern University, and Columbia College Chicago. An educator adviser and master practitioner for the global-not-for-profit Narrative 4, he teaches English at Highland Park High School in Illinois and creative writing at the School of Professional Studies at Northwestern University. He lives in Oak Park, Illinois.

MARY ANNE MOHANRAJ is author of Bodies in Motion (HarperCollins) and ten other titles. Bodies in Motion was a finalist for the Asian American Book Awards, a USA Today Notable Book, and has been translated into six languages. Previous titles include Aqua Erotica and Wet (two erotica anthologies edited for Random House), Kathryn in the City and The Classics Professor (two erotic choose-your-own-adventure novels, Penguin), and The Best of Strange Horizons. Mohanraj founded the Hugo-nominated magazine, Strange Horizons. She was Guest of Honor at WisCon 2010, received a Breaking Barriers Award from the Chicago Foundation for Women for her work in Asian American arts organizing, and won an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Prose. Mohanraj has taught at the Clarion SF/F workshop, and is now Clinical Assistant Professor of fiction and literature and Associate Coordinator of Asian and Asian American Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She serves as Executive Director of both DesiLit ( and the Speculative Literature Foundation ( Recent publications include the collection Without a Map, Aqueduct Press, co-authored with Nnedi Okorafor. Mohanraj’s newest book is a Kickstarter-funded Lambda-award-finalist science fiction novella, The Stars Change, November 2013 from Circlet Press. She serves as editor-in-chief ofJaggery, a South Asian literary journal.