Writing From Vancouver's Downtown Eastside

Book - 2012
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Finalist, City of Vancouver Book Award

"V6A" is the postal prefix for what is often described as "the poorest neighbourhood in Canada"--Vancouver's Downtown Eastside (DTES). Statistics about the area depict conditions related to crime, drugs, sex work, and poverty that overshadow another reality based on self determination.

The anthology V6A refracts the experience of thirty-two writers, emerging and established, who have been a part of the DTES community in some way. Their prose, poetry, and essays reappropriate the coding of the area and recast the DTES as a site of creative energy and human dignity.Cathleen With ( Having Faith in the Polar Girls' Prison ) writes about the area's street kids. Michael Turner ( Hard Core Logo ) recalls years living in an apartment on Powell Street. Madeleine Thien ( Certainty ) examines the effect of the Neighbourhood on her family's dynamic and its role in her development as a writer. Wayde Compton ( After Canaan ) writes about Hogan's Alley and the history of Vancouver's black community. Other pieces explore the sex trade and the Missing Women of the DTES, the culture of Chinatown and other ethnic communities, and the simple, human truths around poverty, kinship, forgiveness, and faith, and remind us that expression flourishes regardless of barriers.

Includes a preface by writer Gary Geddes. Partial proceeds from the sale of this book will fund Thursdays Writing Collective, a program for DTES writers directed by co-editor Elee Kraljii Gardiner.

Publisher: Vancouver : Arsenal Pulp Press, 2012
ISBN: 9781551524627
Branch Call Number: c820.8 V11m
Characteristics: ix, 150 pages : map ; 23 cm


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Jul 26, 2012

An interesting collection by people who live and/or work in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside neighbourhood. As the editors say, this is an area which has become known with a tagline: "poorest postal code in Canada". But, this collection reminds us of the resilience and strong connections found in that community; the memoirs, stories and poetry are by thoughtful and accomplished writers.

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