Who I Am

Jordan Abel, Maia Caron, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Ayelet Tsabari

Who I Am

Moderator: Nic Low

Event Number: 79
Tickets: $20.00

Who I Am

Jordan Abel, Maia Caron, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Ayelet Tsabari

Saturday, October 21
5:00pm - 6:30pm
Performance Works

1218 Cartwright St.

Jordan Abel‘s Griffin Poetry Prize winning collection, Injun, is in “resistance to the problematic representations of Indigenous peoples in the Western genre, and likewise is for everyone who has felt that personally.” Ali Cobby Eckermann describes her writing as an “emotional timeline” of the Stolen Generations—Indigenous children, herself included, taken from their families by the Australian government. When Maia Caron discovered her Métis roots she felt obliged to resurrect the ghosts of her ancestors in her writing. Ayelet Tsabari found her voice as a writer when she began writing in English, and allowed for the “multiplicities of [her] identity” to come through. Come hear four writers whose personal identity is inextricably bound up in their work.

Presented with SFU Library.

Note: Programming details have changed since this Festival Program Guide was printed. Ahmad Danny Ramadan and Leanne Betasamosake are no longer appearing in this event. We are pleased to announce that Jordan Abel and Ayelet Tsabari has been added to this event.

Event Participants:

Jordan Abel

British Columbia

Jordan Abel is a Nisga’a writer from BC. Currently, he is pursuing a PhD at Simon Fraser University where his research concentrates on the intersection between Digital Humanities and Indigenous Literary Studies. Abel’s creative work has recently been anthologized in Best Canadian Poetry (Tightrope), The Land We Are: Artists and Writers Unsettle the Politics of Reconciliation (Arbiter Ring), and The New Concrete: Visual Poetry in the 21st Century (Hayword). Abel is the author of The Place of Scraps (winner of the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize), Un/inhabited, and Injun (winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize).

Maia Caron


Before becoming a writer, Maia Caron was a registered massage therapist and studied Buddhism, Taoism and spiritual healing. In her twenties, she discovered she is Red River Métis and her ancestors fought at the Battle of Seven Oaks in 1816 and served in Louis Riel’s councils. Song of Batoche is her first novel which affectionately explores the relations of Louis Riel, Gabriel Dumont and the Métis.


Ali Cobby Eckermann


Ali Cobby Eckermann is an Indigenous Australian writer. Like her mother and grandmother, she is a member of the Stolen Generations a large group of Indigenous children forcibly taken from their parents by the government to be assimilated. In 2017,  Eckermann won the international Windham-Campbell Literary Prize for Poetry. Eckermann also founded Australia’s first Aboriginal Writers Retreat. Her poetry collections, verse novels and memoir have won several literary awards and she has travelled broadly performing her work. Inside My Mother explores the separation and reunion of a mother and child across generations.

Ayelet Tsabari


Ayelet Tsabari was born in Israel to a large family of Yemeni descent. Her first book, The Best Place on Earth (HarperCollins), won the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature and the Edward Lewis Wallant Award, and was longlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. The book was a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, a Kirkus Review Best Book of 2016, and has been published internationally to great acclaim. Excerpts from her forthcoming book have won a National Magazine Award and a Western Magazine Award. She lives in Toronto.