Denise Chong, an internationally published and award-winning writer, is best known for The Concubine’s Children, a memoir of her three generations of her family set between Canada and China. Called “beautiful, haunting and wise” by the New York Times Book Review, it was a Globe and Mail bestseller for 93 weeks. Her subsequent books were equally ground-breaking social histories: The Girl in the Picture, about the Vietnam War’s most famous casualty; Egg on Mao, a mediation on human rights which pivots on a young bus mechanic's act of defiance during the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests; and Lives of the Family, an exploration of exile and isolation in overlapping stories about a handful of Chinese immigrants who find themselves in small town post-war Canada.
Denise holds four honorary doctorates, is a past co-chair of the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, and in 2013, was named an Officer of the Order of Canada for “writing books that raise our social consciousness.”
Denise was the University of Calgary appointed Writer in Residence in 2017-2018 during which she worked on her 5th book.
Dr. Jacqueline Jenkins
Moderator Dr. Jacqueline Jenkins teaches and researches at the University of Calgary and is currently the Head of the Department of English. Her research and teaching interests include medieval performance and dramatic productions; women's literacy, and the patronage, production and transmission of manuscripts in the late Middle Ages; vernacular devotional literature and lay spirituality and devotional practices.