Art Works Podcast: M. Evelina Galang
This week's podcast features M. Evelina Galang, who writes short stories, novels, and essays and directs the MFA creative writing program at the University of Miami. Her books include the story collection, Her Wild American Self and the novel One Tribe, which won the 2004 AWP Prize in the novel category and the Global Filipino Literary Award for fiction. Much of her writing aims to give voice to the women and girls living the hyphenated lives of Filipina-Americans. She spans generations, researching and collecting the stories of surviving Filipina comfort women---the girls and women forced into sex camps during World War II---and actively advocating on their behalf. A few years ago, she brought the different generations of women she works with together. Reading that the highest teen suicide rate in the San Diego area was among Filipina-Americans, Galang reflected upon her work with the comfort women and their determination to survive the horror of the camps. She decided that the comfort women had something to teach these adolescent girls. So she brought together a group of teenagers to go to the Philippines with her to work for eight weeks with surviving comfort women of World War II to learn their stories.