Apr 29, 2019
Wayson Choy was born in Vancouver in 1939. He spent his childhood in the city's Chinatown and subsequently attended the University of British Columbia where he studied creative writing. He moved to Toronto in 1962, and taught at Humber College from 1967 to 2004. His novel The Jade Peony (1995) won the Trillium Book Award and the City of Vancouver Book Award. His novel All That Matters, was published in 2004.
I interviewed him about it some years later in Ottawa. Our conversation was among the first I recorded for the Biblio File. During it we talk about a range of topics, including the immigrant experience, conflicting cultural values, the language of the heart, tradition, butterflies, grandmothers, the colonial system, "the other," wisdom and storytelling, extended families, television, ancestors, elders and sons, obedience, ghosts, short leaders and actors, community, doing the right thing, luck, important things being invisible, internalized oppressions, banquet tables, and bananas.
Regrettably our conversation cuts off at about the 33 minute mark, but I nonetheless wanted to post it to mark Wayson's passing. He died today, April 29th, 2019 at the age of 80. RIP.