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College of Arts and Humanities

Lion Rock Speaker Series: Erika L Sánchez

May 7, 2019 at 6:00 p.m.

Erika L. Sánchez's acclaimed young adult novel, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, was nominated for the National Book Award in Young People's Literature and was an instant New York Times bestseller. A novelist, essayist, poet and self-described "cheerleader" for young women, she seeks to amplify the stories and voices of marginalized people everywhere through the power of storytelling.

Erika L. Sánchez’s first novel, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, was immediately heralded as one of the most significant works of young adult fiction in recent years. Born and raised in a working class town outside of Chicago to formerly undocumented Mexican immigrants, Sánchez’s experience informed her moving depiction of the realities of undocumented life in America. Told through the eyes of a teenage girl trying to find her place between Mexican culture and American life after a tragedy upends her family, the book compassionately and powerfully touches on numerous contemporary issues including mental health, gender, and immigration.

Prior to publishing I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, Sánchez received numerous grants and accolades in support of her work from the Poetry Foundation, the CantoMundo Prize, Bread Loaf Scholarship, the Guild Complex of Chicago, and the Boston Review, all of which added to her reputation as an emerging writer to watch. As a journalist, she’s been featured in The Guardian, Jezebel, Rolling Stone, Salon, Buzzfeed, and Cosmopolitan, and released her first book of poetry, Lessons on Expulsion to acclaim from outlets like The New York Times and The Washington Post.
When not writing, Sánchez is an enthusiastic advocate for young women everywhere, and speaks about the rights and experiences of undocumented immigrants and young people of color, using her platform and her journey as a writer to encourage her audiences to tell their own stories. Sánchez is available for speaking engagements with both English and Spanish-speaking audiences. Recently, she was awarded the Princeton Arts Fellowship and currently teaches in the creative writing department at Princeton University.

Sanchez will also be giving a Craft Talk from noon-1:00 p.m. on May 7, 2019. Room TBA.

Event Type: 
Fine & Performing Arts

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