Set mostly in the Middle East, political themes engulf Raza Ali Hasan’s poetry and serve as a key reason for an invitation by MU’s Center for Literary Arts to read selections from current and future works Thursday.
Born in Bangladesh and raised in Indonesia and Pakistan, Hasan focuses his book, Grieving Shias on the Middle East and other issues. His diverse body of work and insight are the reason why the CLA selected him to share his work on campus, said Chad Parmenter, assistant director of the CLA.
“A lot of his poems focus on issues that can be tied to the Middle East and other matters of cultural diversity,” Parmenter said.
The CLA’s invitation to Hasan was extended a year ago because he fit their mold of an accomplished young writer. While his poems have appeared in publications such as Tampa Review and Poetry International, Grieving Shias remains his first book and the poet is relatively unknown.
“The Center for Literary Arts tries to bring in established writers who are doing great work early in their careers,” Parmenter said. “He’s fresh.”