Alexander Chee

Alexander Chee - Picador Guest Professor in the winter semester 2012/13

Alexander Chee was born in Rhode Island, and raised in South Korea, Guam and Maine. He is a recipient of the 2003 Whiting Writers’ Award, a 2004 NEA Fellowship in Fiction and residency fellowships from the MacDowell Colony , the VCCA, Ledig House, the Hermitage and Civitella Ranieri . His first novel, Edinburgh (Picador, 2002), is a winner of the Michener Copernicus Prize, the AAWW Lit Award and the Lambda Editor’s Choice Prize, and was a Publisher’s Weekly Best Book of the Year and a Booksense 76 selection. In 2003, Out Magazine honored him as one of their 100 Most Influential People of the Year. His essays and stories have appeared in, Out, The Man I Might Become, Loss Within Loss, Men On Men 2000, His 3 and Boys Like Us. He has taught fiction and nonfiction writing at the New School University, Wesleyan, Amherst College and Iowa. His second novel The Queen of the Night was another best-seller and his latest work, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel (2018), was named a Best Book of 2018 by New York Magazine, The Washington Post, Publisher’s Weekly, NPR, and Time Magazine, among others. He is a 2021 United States Artists Fellow and 2021 Guggenheim Fellow in Nonfiction. He currently lives in New York City and blogs at Koreanish.

Alexander Chee in conversation with Senthuran Varatharajah

In his autobiographically influenced debut novel “Edinburgh”, published in the USA in 2001, Alexander Chee, author and political activist in the gay movement, tells of sexual assaults in a boys’ choir; for this Alexander Chee was awarded several prizes. In the collection of essays “How to Write an Autobiographical Novel” (2018) he looks back on further stages in his life. It was rated one of the ‘Best Books of the Year’ by New York Magazine, Washington Post, Publishers Weekly and Time Magazine. Albino Verlag has now published both books for the first time in German (in the translation by Nicola Heine and Timm Stafe).
The author read from both books and talked to Senthuran Varatharajah.

Alexander Chee | Photo: M. Sharkey
Senthuran Varatharajah | Photo: H.-U. Burgemann

Alexander Chee is the author of the novels Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night, and the essay collection How To Write An Autobiographical Novel, all from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He is a contributing editor at The New Republic, and an editor at large at VQR. His essays and stories have appeared in The New York Times Book Review, T Magazine, Tin House, Slate, and Guernica, among others. He is winner of a 2003 Whiting Award, a 2004 NEA Fellowship in prose and a 2010 MCCA Fellowship, and residency fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the VCCA, Civitella Ranieri and Amtrak. He is an associate professor of English and Creative Writing at Dartmouth College. In 2012/2013 he was Picador Visiting Professor at the University of Leipzig.

Senthuran Varatharajah, born in 1984, studied philosophy, Protestant theology and cultural studies in Marburg, Berlin and London. His debut novel “Vor der Zunahme der Zeichen” was published in 2016 by S. Fischer Verlag; for this he was awarded the Bremen Literature Promotion Prize 2017, the Adelbert von Chamisso Promotion Prize 2017 and the Rauris Literature Prize 2017, among others.

Our Guest Professors

  • All
  • 2006
  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016
  • 2017
  • 2018
  • 2019
  • 2020
  • 2021
  • 2022
  • 2023
  • 2024