'Tea W/ords' Literary Series Brings Diverse Writers to NYU Shanghai

Feb 1 2015

On January 31, 2015, NYU Shanghai's first floor gallery space swarmed with eager listeners and literary fans attending the ever-anticipated "Tea W/ords" literary series, hosted by curator and Writing GAF Daniel Cuesta.

The event's featured authors were John Brantingham, Wang Anyi (王安忆), and Genevieve Leone, Professor of English for Academic Purposes at NYU Shanghai.

Leone drew the crowd in with several ekphrastic poems accompanied with images of the artworks they represented; Brantingham read from his collections of poetry East of Los Angeles and The Green of Sunset.

Wang Anyi—one of China's most prolific and widely anthologized writers—read excerpts from The Song of Everlasting Sorrow, 长恨歌, one of her most acclaimed novels set in Shanghai.

Leone accompanied by reading the English translations for the chosen selections.

Both Wang and Brantingham write about the local experience—addressing what an individual feels, senses, and endures in some of the world's most populated cities.

According to Cuesta, the "change over time, the feelings of characters, and [the ability] to muse on life in the city" is what one experiences through these authors, whose words traverse the immense landscapes of Los Angeles and Shanghai.

The next "Tea W/ords" event in March will feature American poets and translators Willis Barnstone and Tony Barnstone.


Written by Charlotte San Juan, Photos by Noel Konagai