If We Want Diverse Books, We Need Diverse MFA Programs
Recently, in the New Yorker, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Junot Diaz described his experience in his Master of Fine Arts in creative writing program: His first year, he almost dropped out because it “was too white.”
States Diaz: “I was a person of color in a workshop whose theory of reality did not include my most fundamental experience as a person of color.”
Diaz’s experience is not unusual. A decade ago, in my incoming class of the graduate program in fiction writing at New York University, there were three women of African descent—one from Ethiopia, one from the American South and myself, from Uganda. There were also two men of African descent—one biracial Jewish man and one from the American West. An Asian-American student rounded out the diversity.
Hope is the Media Director for Kimbilio.