Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi
Azareen Van der Vliet Oloomi is an award-winning essayist and novelist and the Dorothy G. Griffin College Professor of English at the University of Notre Dame. She is the founder of Literatures of Annihilation, Exile, and Resistance, a reading and lecture series at the crossroads of the arts and human rights. Her work centers migration, geopolitics, and exile.
At Radcliffe, she is working on “A Love Supreme,” a speculative novel-in-progress about America’s continuously evolving definitions of freedom. The novel is set in a fictional quasi-utopia, called the Institute for the Advancement of Cultural Freedom (IACF), founded by the Walt Whitman Estate on the grounds of an old horse ranch in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona. Inspired by Thoreau’s notion that “in wildness is the preservation of the world,” the novel interrogates the great experiment of American democracy and its selective definitions of freedom along with the corresponding shifts in constructions of American identity in relation to nature and notions of the wild.
She is the author of Savage Tongues (Mariner Books, 2021) and Call Me Zebra (Mariner Books, 2018), which won the 2019 PEN/Faulkner Award. She received a 2015 Whiting Award and a National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 award for her debut novel, Fra Keeler (Dorothy, a publishing project, 2012). Her work has been supported by the Aspen Institute, the Fulbright Program, and MacDowell and has appeared in the Believer, BOMB Magazine, Granta, the New York Times, the Sewanee Review, and the Yale Review.