IN-PERSON: Diya Abdo presents AMERICAN REFUGE
Tuesday, September 6, 2022 - Signing Line at 5:30 pm, Talk begins at 6:00 pm
Scroll down to order your book, and please indicate in the comments if you’d like 1-2 seats held for you at the event!
Flyleaf will offer seating for up to 50 in-person guests, with priority access given to folks who purchase the book. Masks recommended.
Forced to leave their homes, they came to America
In this intimate and eye-opening book, Diya Abdo--daughter of refugees, U.S. immigrant, English professor, and activist—shares the stories of seven refugees. Coming from around the world, they’re welcomed by Every Campus A Refuge (ECAR), an organization Diya founded to leverage existing resources at colleges to provide temporary shelter to refugee families.
Bookended by Diya’s powerful essay "Radical Hospitality" and the inspiring coda “Names and Numbers,” each chapter weaves the individual stories into a powerful journey along a common theme:
- Life Before (“The Body Leaves its Soul Behind”)
- The Moment of Rupture (“Proof and Persecution”)
- The Journey (“Right Next Door”)
- Arrival/Resettlement (“Back to the Margins”)
- A Few Years Later (“From Camp to Campus”)
The lives explored in American Refuge include the artist who, before he created the illustration on the cover of this book, narrowly escaped two assassination attempts in Iraq and now works at Tyson cutting chicken. We learn that these refugees from Burma, Burundi, Iraq, Palestine, Syria, and Uganda lived in homes they loved, left against their will, moved to countries without access or rights, and were among the 1% of the “lucky” few to resettle after a long wait, almost certain never to return to the homes they never wanted to leave. We learn that anybody, at any time, can become a refugee.
Diya Abdo is the first daughter and granddaughter of Palestinian refugees born in their country of displacement, Jordan. A graduate of Yarmouk University, she earned master's and doctorate degrees from Drew University. She is a full professor in the English department of Guilford College, where she founded the first chapter of Every Campus A Refuge (ECAR), which aims to host global refugees. Diya is the recipient of several national community engagement awards, including the 2021 J.M.K. Innovation Prize for her work with ECAR. She lives in Greensboro, NC, with her partner, daughters, and cats.