“Quiet of Chorus” Book Release Events in the Bay Area

Critical Resistance- Oakland is thrilled to partner with author and organizer Vanessa Huang in bringing their new work Quiet of Chorus to the Bay area. This book is based on Vanessa’s years of working fighting against prison expansion in California and advocating on behalf of and organizing with women and gender nonconforming people in CA state prisons, and therefore a sort of history, a documentation of our legacies and a call to action in this current moment.

For the past 20 years, Critical Resistance (CR) has modeled that cultural practice and art are critical components of the fight for prison industrial complex abolition. The power of reclaiming culture taken from communities through centuries of colonization, genocide, and social and economic repression and the practices of creating are acts of resistance. 

This event series is an opportunity to learn and celebrate our collective years of hard work in the anti-prison movement in California, to uplift and embrace cultural work as part of our organizing, and to bring new, emergent and established voices alongside each other in joint resistance and resilience. 

Donations and sponsorships welcome! Make a gift here.

Quiet of Chorus Book Release, featuring Vanessa Huang (author of Quiet of Chorus) + Tongo Eisen-Martin

Co-Hosted by Critical Resistance- Oakland and Small Press Traffic

Date: Saturday 10/13

Time: 6pm

Location: Alley Cat Books, 3036 24th St, San Francisco

RSVP and share on Facebook.

FMI: jess@criticalresistance.org


Poetry and Resistance: A Community Reading

Elmaz Abinader
Poets & Storytellers from Project WHAT!
Sully Rosales, Critical Resistance
Tongo Eisen-Martin
Vanessa Huang, author of Quiet of Chorus
and more…

Co-Sponsored by Critical Resistance- Oakland and Project WHAT!

Date: Sunday 10/14

Time: 4-6pm

Location: Location: Eastside Cultural Center, 2277 International Blvd, Oakland

RSVP and share on Facebook.

FMI: jess@criticalresistance.org


Cultural Resistance and Organizing: Poetry Reading, Presentations and Discussion

featuring Vanessa Huang (author Quiet of Chorus), Ivette Ale of CURB (Californians United for a Responsible Budget), The Abolitionist editorial collective, and Jess Heaney, Critical Resistance. 

Co-Sponsored by Ethnic Studies, Literatures and Languages,  and the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Departments at Mills College,  and Critical Resistance- Oakland

Date: Monday 10/15

Time: 6:30-8pm

Location: The Rothwell Theater, Mills College, 5000 MacArthur Blvd, Oakland, CA

RSVP and share on Facebook.

FMI: syoung@mills.edu

Sponsoring these events:

  • helps make these events FREE and therefore accessible to formerly imprisoned people, youth, and low-income communities; 

  • demonstrates support for visionary political organizing and cultural work in these critical times.

  • ensures the event participation is truly reflective of the movement we are building;

  • advances strategic grassroots organizing and cultural work against jail expansion and the violence of policing in the Bay Area with CR-Oakland.


Thank you for your support! Make a contribution here.


About the book:

quiet of chorus lifts up the often muffled lineages of resistance to normalized state violence in contemporary life. Huang’s embodied poem-worlds stoke our yearnings for freedom and wholeness, and help enliven the path forward.
–Morgan Bassichis

Vanessa Huang’s first book of poems bears witness to an intimate terrain traversing pasts, presents, and futures within and surrounding political movements to end various embodiments of the prison industrial complex in the 2000s, California and beyond. Making refuge in diaspora, these poems inhabit and transform the poet’s languages of heritage and migration into their own call-and-response syntax, inviting readers and listeners into prayer, pause, novel gesture towards freedom.

About Vanessa:

Born in Berkeley and home in diaspora from California and Taipei to Atlanta, New York, and Tianjin, Vanessa Huang is a multimedia poet, artist, and cultural worker whose practice inherits teachings from the prison industrial complex abolition, gender liberation, and intersecting social justice movements. For over 15 years, Vanessa has worked to shift cultural narratives and strategies based in fear, violence, and exploitation towards realities centering love, vision, and transformation. Vanessa’s deejaying extends this practice, continuing to conjure public/digital space for sonic healing and freedom dreams. Read more here.

quiet of chorus (UpSet Press 2018) is Vanessa’s debut poetry collection. Vanessa has received literary fellowships from Kundiman and Macondo, holds a BA in Ethnic Studies from Brown University, and has worked with racial, economic, and trans/gender justice organizations with a focus on decarceration, homecoming, and transformative justice. Vanessa’s interdisciplinary work and writings have conversed through community organizing, printmaking, and rallies; film, choreography, and sonic performance; letters to/from prison and with bread delivery through a community supported bakery subscription newsletter; and a range of publications including critical race and gender studies journals, magazines, and the anthologies Abolition Now: Ten Years of Strategy Against the Prison Industrial Complex (AK Press, 2008), Captive Genders: Trans Embodiment and the Prison Industrial Complex (AK Press, 2011), Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities (South End Press, 2011), and Writing the Walls Down: A Convergence of LGBTQ Voices (Trans-Genre Press, 2015).

About Critical Resistance- Oakland:

CR-Oakland is a local chapter of Critical Resistance, a national grassroots organization dedicated to abolishing the prison industrial complex and the building up of healthy, self-determined communities free from state violence and interpersonal harm. Since 1998, CR-Oakland has halted California’s 20 year prison building boom and contributed to local victories such as the full elimination of gang injunctions in Oakland (Stop the Injunctions Coalition), the halting of jail expansion in San Francisco (No New SF Jail Coalition), and end of the largest SWAT team training in the world (Stop Urban Shield).