"Part symposium, part late night talk show, part Youtube nostalgia-fest," the Asian American Writers' Workshop will be presenting a fun, five-part event series throughout March to think about an alternative racial history of the 1990s. It goes without saying that the 90s were a strange time: neoliberal triumphalism gave birth to a culture of political correctness and a reigning sensibility of diversity based on the simple belief we can all just get along. Yet, at every step of the way, it was accompanied by intense forms of division and surreal spectacles of discrimination of virtually every stripe imaginable.
Whether it was seen in the overt police brutality of Los Angeles and New York in the early 90s or expressed through subtler and more insidious forms, the cultural history of race, gender, and sexuality of the 1990s remains ambiguous at best, and what it means for us today, is a very much undecided thing, indeed. As it is today, with 90s nostalgia all aflame and pervading our fashion, music and wider cultural consciousness at large, it is definitely worth taking a trip to go all wayback-playback and back in the day and mine some of the peculiarities and odder cultural contradictions of the decade in order to see what it may mean for us in the present.
It should prove to be a fresh night: participating in the panels will be Verso authors David Roediger and Vijay Prashad. Roediger will be holding fort on "White Noise: Vanilla Ice, Grunge and Stuff White People Like," while Prashad will be lamping and maxin' on stage to discuss hip-hop, gender and race as part of the "I LOVE THE 90s" talk.
Please visit the Asian American Writers' Workshop for more event details or just peep our events page for more. Vuarnet t-shirts, fades and LA Gear will all be welcome.