In Person: Dorothy Chan Book Launch at Milkweed Books

Central Time

Milkweed Books
1011 Washington Avenue South
Suite 107
Minneapolis, MN 55415
United States




Join us as Milkweed Books welcomes award-winning author Dorothy Chan for a reading from their new poetry book Return of the Chinese Femme, an unabashed exploration of queerness, excess, identity, and tenderness. Dorothy will read from their book and sit in conversation alongside poet Douglas Kearney, followed by time for audience questions and a book signing.

Enjoy a social hour in our brick-and-mortar indie bookstore Milkweed Books beginning at 5 p.m., followed by the reading and conversation beginning at 6 p.m.

About the book

The speaker in Dorothy Chan’s fifth collection, Return of the Chinese Femme, walks through life fearlessly, “forehead forever exposed,” the East Asian symbol of female aggression. She’s the troublemaker protagonist—the “So Chinese Girl”—the queer in a family of straights— the rambunctious ringleader of the girl band, always ready with the perfect comeback, wearing a blue fur coat, drinking a whiskey neat. They indulge on the themes of food, sex, fantasy, fetish, popular culture, and intimacy.

Chan organizes the collection in the form of a tasting menu, offering the reader a taste of each running theme. Triple sonnets, recipe poems, and other inventive plays on diction and form pepper the collection. Amidst the bravado, Return of the Chinese Femme represents all aspects of her identity—Asian heritage, queerness, kid of immigrants’ story—in the most real ways possible, conquering the world through joy and resilience.

About the speakers

Dorothy Chan (she/they) is the author of five poetry collections, including Return of the Chinese Femme (Deep Vellum, April 2024) and Revenge of the Asian Woman (Diode Editions, 2019), a finalist for the Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Prize and the Lambda Literary Award in Bisexual Poetry. They are an Associate Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of Honey Literary Inc., a 501(c)(3) BIPOC literary arts organization. Chan was a 2022 recipient of the University of Wisconsin System’s Dr. P.B. Poorman Award for Outstanding Achievement on Behalf of LGBTQ+ People. Visit their website at

Douglas Kearney is a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Cy Twombly awardee and Cave Canem fellow. He’s published eight books and teaches Creative Writing at the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities.