Deborah Paredez is a poet, performance scholar, and cultural critic. Her poetry and prose explore the workings of memory, the legacies of war, and feminist elegy. She is author of the critical study, Selenidad: Selena, Latinos, and the Performance of Memory (Duke University Press, 2009) and of the poetry collection This Side of Skin (Wings Press, 2002). She also serves as Series Co-Editor of the CantoMundo Poetry Book Prize awarded annually to a collection by a Latinx poet. Her poetry and essays have appeared in a range of publications including The New York Times, Los Angeles Review of Books, Boston Review, Poetry, Poet Lore, and the anthology, Inheriting the War: Poetry and Prose by Descendants of Vietnam Veterans and Refugees (Norton 2018).
Paredez received her PhD in Interdisciplinary Theatre and Performance at Northwestern University and her BA in English at Trinity University. Her work has been shaped by her encounters with women of color, feminism, formalist poetry, diva performances, and by her experiences as the daughter of a Vietnam veteran immigrant father and a mother whose nursing skills could patch up many wounds. Born and raised in San Antonio, she has lived on both coasts, endured a handful of Chicago winters, and taught American poetry in Paris. She currently lives with her husband, historian Frank Guridy, and their daughter in New York City where she is a professor of creative writing and ethnic studies at Columbia University and Co-Founder and Co-Director of CantoMundo, a national organization for Latina/o poets.