More Than A Single Story

Established in memory of William Bouton Welles ’71, the Welles Award grants up to $3,000 of financial support to select Third and Fourth Formers of The Lawrenceville School looking to pursue projects of personal interest that reach beyond the gates of Lawrenceville. Managing Editor Allison Huang received a Welles Grant Award in 2016 to delve into creative writing and global affairs.

With my Welles Grant Award, I was able to spend two weeks at UIowa at Between The Lines Silk Routes, a program for pre-college and collegiate level students interested in the connections between cultural affairs and creative writing. There were 20 of us: 8 from the U.S. and 12 from Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, India, and The Maldives. We studied global literature, visited local museums, worked in translation workshops, made books, read at open mics, and honed our own writing. Our program was less of a series of classes than it was an intensive familial gathering in which we moved from activity to activity together, learning as much from our coursework as we did building the friendships between us. 

After the program, I compiled an anthology made of works by my fellow BTL participants. The voices in the anthology weave together in a way that works to dispel misconceptions caused by the single story, the single truth about an entity that we aggrandize until it no longer becomes true of that nation, country, people. More about this can be found in the introduction of the anthology.

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