Washington Independent Review of Books

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Tessa Hulls — Feeding Ghosts with Kat Chow — at The Wharf

Location 610 Water St SW Washington, DC 20024
Date Wednesday, May 15, 2024 at 7:00pm - 8:00pm
Duration   1 hours
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Tessa Hulls' evocative and genre-defying graphic memoir, "Feeding Ghosts," tells the captivating story of three generations of women in her family: her Chinese grandmother, Sun Yi; her mother, Rose; and herself. Sun Yi, a Shanghai journalist, fled to Hong Kong with her daughter after enduring eight years of government harassment following the 1949 Communist victory. Upon arrival, Sun Yi wrote a bestselling memoir about her persecution and survival, used the proceeds to put Rose in an elite boarding school, and then had a breakdown that led to her commitment to a mental institution. Rose eventually came to the United States on a scholarship and brought Sun Yi to live with her, and Tessa watched as her mother cared for Sun Yi, both of them struggling under the weight of Sun Yi's unexamined trauma and mental illness. Vowing to escape her mother's smothering fear, Tessa left home and traveled to the farthest-flung corners of the globe, but at the age of thirty, she realized that her freedom had become more like running away, and she returned home to face the history that shaped her family. Extensively researched and gorgeously rendered, "Feeding Ghosts" is Hulls' homecoming, a vivid journey into the beating heart of one family, set against the dark backdrop of Chinese history. By turns fascinating and heartbreaking, inventive and poignant, "Feeding Ghosts" exposes the fear and trauma that haunt generations, and the love that holds them together. Tessa Hulls will be in conversation with Kat Chow, a writer and journalist who has contributed to various publications, including The New York Times Magazine and The Atlantic. This event promises to be a captivating exploration of family, history, and the power of storytelling, and attendees are sure to be moved and inspired by Hulls' remarkable work.

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