If you’ll be attending ALA Annual 2013 in Chicago, learn about our essay series and join the conversation to share what your normal is.


What’s Your Normal?: A Discourse of Own Realities

Time: Saturday, June 28, 10:30am-11:30am
Location: Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, Jefferson Park 10B
ALA Scheduler: http://ala13.ala.org/node/10928


Last year, APALA launched What’s Your Normal?, a new essay series that highlights the diversity–e.g., ethnicity, language, religion, sexuality, (dis)ability, citizenship, socioeconomic status–within the Asian and Pacific American category and offers snippets of what is “normal” for the writers. With this program, we will continue and broaden the conversation and provide a forum for constructive discourse – using personal narratives as starting points, we will not only create awareness about individual realities and identities but discuss them within the larger social contexts and come up with practical and positive ideas and action items. So, what’s your normal? Let’s talk!


Based on the concept of a conversation about our different definitions of what is “normal” for us, this program takes some overarching categories of diversity and serves them up for discussion, as well as for brainstorming for practical service and program ideas.

We will begin with a very brief introduction to the What’s Your Normal? essay series and how it serves as the impetus for the session’s discourse. We will then form small breakout groups, with each group focusing on a specific topic; the bulk of the session will be spent on this part. At the end, we will reconvene, share the main points and outcomes from the discussions, and prioritize ideas to be pursued.

At least three topics will be discussed at this session. The pre-determined topics are: 1) racial, ethnic, and national identities 2) gender identity and sexual orientation, and 3) health and disability status. Depending on interest and the number of attendees, one or two additional topics may be added; attendees will vote on which topics to add. Ideas for additional topics include: generational identity (age), religious affiliation and identity, immigrant and refugee status and identity, and socio-economic status; attendees are free to add their own topic ideas. While there will be facilitators for the pre-determined topics, we will need volunteers to facilitate the additional topics.



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