During the Iowa Writers’ Workshop 75th Anniversary and reunion in 2011, Cathy Park Hong spo0ke on a panel “What is the New Avant Garde?”
In it, the presenters illustrated the stakes of the debate of sequestering workshops in English Department. Two of the younger presenters, Cathy Park Hong and Jonathan Thirkield, did so unintentionally. Both looked at the conditions and context for the creation of the previous avant garde through a lens that was heavily influenced by identity theory and postmodernism, to arrive (if tentatively) at what amounted to the same assumption, which was that a new avant garde would probably have some influence on technology but they were not entirely sure yet what it would be. Both had bright and intriguing insights about the types of societal repressions that a new avant garde might resist.