F131. Past as Present: The Relevance of History in Fiction

Room 18 & 19, Tampa Convention Center, First Floor
Friday, March 9, 2018
9:00 am to 10:15 am


Historical fiction may conjure an image of a swooning Victorian lady or hardscrabble homesteader, but the contemporary meaning and urgency of novels set in the past is complex and often overlooked. This panel explores how the prism of history enables reflection that’s impossible in contemporary settings; how the subjectivity of interpreting history leads to innovation and discovery; the line between revising history and reimagining lives; and whether history may "belong" to anyone.



Amy Brill is the author of The Movement of Stars and a 2015 NYFA fiction fellow. Her fiction and essays have been appeared in One Story, The Common, Guernica, and several anthologies, and she's been awarded residencies at Millay Colony, Jentel, the American Antiquarian Society, and elsewhere.

Alexander Chee is the author of the novels Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night. Recipient of the Whiting Writers Award and a NEA in fiction, he is an associate professor of English at Dartmouth College.

Allison Amend is the award-winning author of the short story collection Things That Pass for Love, and the novels Stations West, A Nearly Perfect Copy, and Enchanted Islands.

Dolen Perkins-Valdez is the author of The New York Times bestselling novel Wench. Her second novel Balm was published May 2015. Her stories have appeared in The Kenyon Review and elsewhere. She teaches in the American University MFA program.

Yoojin Grace Wuertz


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center