“I Am Oakland: Voices of Second Generation Southeast Asian Youth”


In Fall 2019, the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants (CERI) in partnership with ARTogether is offering poetry workshops to Southeast Asian (SEA) youth in Oakland. “I Am Oakland: Voices of Second Generation Southeast Asian Youth” is a series of poetry writing/storytelling workshops and community performances by the children and grandchildren of Southeast Asian refugee and immigrant communities living in Oakland. 

This project is facilitated by 3 SEA teaching artists: Monica Sok, Danny Thanh Nguyen, and Anthony Veasna So. 

SEA voices are often underrepresented and our history nearly erased in the consciousness of America. Through this program, we are hoping to amplify the voices of SEA youth in Oakland. We are looking for young folks who are excited to learn, read, write, and share their stories! Join us and continue the tradition of storytelling while exploring your creativity. Participants will engage in ideas of identity, home, and community. 

*This project is possible by funding from the City of Oakland Cultural Funding Program

** Established in 2017, ARTogether's mission is to provide resources for creative self-expression to refugee and immigrant communities, that foster growth, stability and human connection.

Teaching Artists

Monica Sok is the author of A Nail the Evening Hangs On (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). She is a Cambodian American poet and the daughter of former refugees. She is the recipient of fellowships from Hedgebrook, the Elizabeth George Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, Kundiman, Jerome Foundation, and others. Currently, Sok is a 2018-2020 Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and also teaches poetry at Banteay Srei in Oakland, California. She is originally from Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Indie Bound, Amazon

Danny Thanh Nguyen’s short stories and personal essays have appeared in The Journal, South Dakota Review, Entropy, Foglifter, New Delta Review, Gulf Coast, and other magazines. He is the editor of AS IS, an anthology of Vietnamese American art and literature. He has received fellowships from Kundiman, Voices of Our Nation Foundation, and Lambda Literary Foundation.

Anthony Veasna So is a queer boy, a Cambodian-American son of former refugees, and a graduate of Stanford University. His prose and comics have appeared in n+1, Ninth Letter, Hobart, and elsewhere. He is a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow and an MFA Candidate in Fiction at Syracuse University, where he is a University Fellow and where he received the Joyce Carol Oates Award in Fiction. He is working on a novel about a Cambodian-American rapper and a collection of stories.