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Sari Botton
Essays editor, Longreads

How to Write Iranian-America, or The Last Essay (Porochista Khakpour, Catapult)

Women writers of color aren’t given enough opportunities, and too often when they are, the opportunity is limited. They’re asked, again and again, to write about aspects of their identity, and are rarely afforded chances to write about anything else. Writing in the second person, Porochista Khakpour helps the reader to imagine being an artist hemmed in by such limitations. She takes us through the arc of her career thus far: from deciding early on that she didn’t want to “write what you know,” as a mentor suggested; to becoming the Iranian-American essayist of choice every time certain publications wanted an opinion from that particular demographic; to…

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