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Episode 22: Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor


Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor is a storyteller, writer and poet residing in Washington state. We talk about her new collection of poetry "Dancing Between Bamboo Poles", her rich family history, about being "silenced" and Filipino stereotypes, to name a few.



Rebecca's email: rmm.wordbinder@gmail.com

Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor’s non-fiction, poetry, and short fiction have appeared in print and online in several journals and anthologies including Katipunan Literary Magazine, Growing Up Filipino II: More Stories for Young Adults, Kuwento: Small Things, and Beyond Lumpia, Pansit, and Seven Manangs Wild: An Anthology. Her poetry chapbook Pause Mid-Flight was released in 2010. She is also the co-editor of True Stories: The Narrative Project Vol. 1, and her poetry and essays have been collected in Dancing Between Bamboo Poles. She has been performing as a storyteller since 2006 and specializes in stories based on Filipino folktales and Filipino-American history.

Rebecca, as Rebecca A. Saxton, received her MFA in Creative Writing from Pacific Lutheran University in 2012, her BA in Humanities from Washington State University in 1998, and her MA degree in English with honors from Western Washington University in 2003.

Artist’s Statement:
As a Filipino American writer and performance storyteller, my art is based on the impact of heritage on shaping and informing personal experience and the importance of self-expression as a method of healing. I view my writing and performing as subversive acts against invisibility and silence in a society where women of color are often viewed through an objectifying, exoticizing lens. Raised in a family focused on assimilation, I grew up sheltered from the Vietnam War and the Marcos dictatorship by a shield of language. Becoming a socially aware cultural activist has been a process of understanding the impact of the American Dream trope on my family and upbringing. As a result, I have connected with diverse ethnic groups who also value art as a method of self-expression and an act of compassion. A desire for wholeness drives my art which seeks to weave past and present, folktale with fact, subjectivity with objectivity into works which entertain and enliven others.


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