Tessa Hulls: "Feeding Ghosts", with Jenny Odell

Mar 12 2024 - 7:00pm


Join us on Tuesday, March 12th at 7pm at Pegasus Books Downtown as we celebrate the launch of Tessa Hulls' remarkable debut graphic memoir, Feeding Ghosts. Joined in conversation by Jenny Odell (Saving TimeHow to do Nothing), Hulls will read from, discuss, and sign copies of her book, available for purchase at the event.

About the book:

"Feeding Ghosts reminds us how much the personal is political . . . an audacious, awe-inspiring feat. For me, it was an essential read." —Ling Ma, author of Bliss Montage

An astonishing, deeply moving graphic memoir about three generations of Chinese women, exploring love, grief, exile, and identity: In her evocative, genre-defying graphic memoir, Tessa Hulls tells the story of three generations of women in her family: her Chinese grandmother, Sun Yi; her mother, Rose; and herself.

Sun Yi was a Shanghai journalist caught in the political crosshairs of the 1949 Communist victory. After eight years of government harassment, she fled to Hong Kong with her daughter. Upon arrival, Sun Yi wrote a bestselling memoir about her persecution and survival, used the proceeds to put Rose in an elite boarding school—and promptly had a breakdown that left her committed to a mental institution. Rose eventually came to the United States on a scholarship and brought Sun Yi to live with her.

Tessa watched her mother care for Sun Yi, both of them struggling under the weight of Sun Yi's unexamined trauma and mental illness. Vowing to escape her mother’s smothering fear, Tessa left home and traveled to the farthest-flung corners of the globe (Antarctica). But at the age of thirty, it starts to feel less like freedom and more like running away, and she returns home to face the history that shaped her family. Extensively researched and gorgeously rendered, Feeding Ghosts is Hulls’s homecoming, a vivid journey into the beating heart of one family, set against the dark backdrop of Chinese history. By turns fascinating and heartbreaking, inventive and poignant, Feeding Ghosts exposes the fear and trauma that haunt generations, and the love that holds them together.

About the author:

Tessa Hulls is an artist, a writer, and an adventurer. Her essays have appeared in The Washington PostAtlas Obscura, and Adventure Journal, and her comics have been published in The RumpusCity Arts, and Spark. She has received grants from the Seattle Office of Arts and Culture and 4Culture, and she is a fellowship recipient of the Washington Artist Trust. Feeding Ghosts is her first book.

About the moderator:

Jenny Odell is an interdisciplinary artist and the author of How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy and Saving Time: Discovering a Life Beyond the Clock. Her writing has been featured in The New York TimesThe Atlantic, and The Paris Review. Odell has been an artist in residence at Recology SF (otherwise known as the dump), the San Francisco Planning Department, and the Internet Archive. From 2013 to 2021, she taught art practice at Stanford University. 

Event address: 
2349 Shattuck Ave
Berkeley, CA 94704
Feeding Ghosts: A Graphic Memoir By Tessa Hulls Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374601652
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: MCD - March 5th, 2024

Event Category: 
Shattuck Location