Poet, novelist, and essayist Julia Alvarez was born in New York, then spent the first ten years of her childhood in the Dominican Republic, until her father’s involvement in a political rebellion forced her family to flee the country. Her novels include How the García Girls Lost Their Accents, In the Time of the Butterflies, and ¡Yo!; she is also author of the poetry collections The Housekeeping Book, The Woman I Kept to Myself, The Other Side, and Homecoming. Her many other books include essays and fiction for young people. Many commentators regard her to be one of the most significant Latina writers; Alvarez is the current writer-in-residence at Middlebury College.
Alvarez read from her work on September 9, 2010, in Cornell’s Goldwin Smith Hall. This interview took place earlier the same day.