We are the Diasporic Peoples Writing Collective (DPWC), a student organization at San Jose State University (SJSU). The collective started with a handful of Creative Writing MFAs who developed community through their shared experiences as students and literary artists.
Today we’re a much larger project that’s powered by student, alum, academic, and ally activists that are helping to build-out a platform for BIPOC+underrepresented literary artists. We maintain work synergy by meeting monthly and participating in a system of mutual support. We learn a lot from one another as a group that is both diverse and inclusive. Everyone is welcome to join: students/alums/academics and allies who enjoy creative writing, literature, and networking.
Writing can sometimes feel like a solitary endeavor, but it’s important to build community, network, and stay connected. This is essential to a writer’s professional development and perhaps sanity.
We have a lot of talent in our collective: some of us have experience writing for Silicon Valley tech, some of us are writers with a mix of creative expertise, and some of us are just here to add to our creative repertoire, but we are all in a position to share and/or give back. To this end, our focus has been to build platform for writers of color and artists who are still underrepresented.
The DPWC is a space for symbiosis, experimentation, and learning. It’s a safe-space for the topics, conversations, and lived experiences that inform our writing, perspectives, and art. We exist because hegemony in the arts is still “a thing” that upstages diversity and necessitates we advocate for opportunity and equity.
The collective is made possible with the help of our leadership team, and faculty advisor, Keenan Norris, PhD, professor of English and Comparative Literature; our alliance with Travis Boyce, PhD, chair of the African American Studies Department; and with the support of Michelle Hager, director of the SJSU Writing Center, who sources us tutorial staff upon request and availability.
The DPWC meets the last Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m., on Zoom, until further notice. Explore our site and contact us to join.
The DPWC was inspired by Voices of Our Nations, VONA, a writing group with a workshop and publishing platform that seeks to raise the voices of literary artists who identify as Black, Indigenous, and/or People of Color (BIPOC) and/or who identify as part of an underrepresented group.
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We are looking for impassioned SJSU students in good academic standing who would like to learn more about our open leadership positions. Contact us if you’d like to be part of the team.