Iraqi-American Women in the Arts: A Reading and Conversation
Date(s) - 12/09/2018
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
The Last Bookstore
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA
The Last Bookstore is pleased to present a reading and conversation between Iraqi-American author, Huda Al-Marashi, and stand up comedian and actress, Zain Shami. After a reading from Huda’s new memoir, First Comes Marriage: My Not-So-Typical American Love Story, Zain and Huda will share their unique perspectives on what it’s like to be members of a vibrant immigrant community while taking on the taboo topics of love, marriage, and sexuality in their art.
First Comes Marriage is an Iraqi-American memoir about immigration, love, and virgin sexuality. When Huda meets Hadi, the boy she will ultimately marry, she is six years old. Both are the American-born children of Iraqi immigrants, who grew up on opposite ends of California. Hadi considers Huda his childhood sweetheart, the first and only girl he’s ever loved, but Huda wants to be successful by both culture’s relationship standards–to honor her religious traditions while also experiencing the kind of love story that would prove to her American friends her marriage was not arranged. First Comes Marriage is Huda’s journey to reconcile her culture’s pragmatic ideas on marriage with Western notions of love and romance. And, with its tender and heartwarming portrayal of an Arab, Muslim family, it debunks stereotypes while challenging our ideas of what it means to fall in love.
Huda Al-Marashi is the Iraqi-American author of the memoir First Comes Marriage: My Not-So-Typical American Love Story. Her other writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The LA Times, al Jazeera, VIDA Review, Refinery 29, The Rumpus, The Offing and elsewhere.
Zain Shami is an Iraqi-American stand up comedian and actress living in Los Angeles.