Min Jin Lee

Elena Seibert

Min Jin Lee

Tuesday, March 17, 2020 7:30 pm

At Benaroya Hall — S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

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Literary Arts

Min Jin Lee is the author of Pachinko, a sweeping, four-generation epic celebrated as the first novel written for an adult audience in English that focuses on Japanese-Korean culture. A finalist for the 2017 National Book Award in fiction, Pachinko is “a beautifully crafted story of love, loss, determination, luck, and perseverance” (Library Journal).

Both of Lee’s novels focus on Korean diaspora—while not connected by characters, her first two books, Free Food for Millionaires and Pachinko, are part of a trilogy of historical fiction exploring what it means to be Korean in other cultures. Her debut, Free Food For Millionaires, tells the story of a first generation Korean American girl living in Queens, navigating the intersection of her traditional family and her social circle. Released in 2007, Free Food for Millionaires was named one of the Top 10 Novels of the Year by NPR’s Fresh Air and USA Today.

Following the publication of her first book, Lee lived in Tokyo for a year while researching for Pachinko, interviewing an array of Korean Japanese people who suffered hardships and prejudice when resettling in their new home. Praised for its nuanced method of teasing out complex historical truths, her second novel appeared on the Best Fiction lists for the GuardianEsquire, and the Chicago Review of Books, among others. Pachinko was also named one of the Best 10 Books of 2017 by the New York Times.

Lee was born in Seoul, South Korea and moved to the United States as a seven-year-old with her family. She grew up in Queens, New York, and she received her undergraduate degree in history from Yale College. She then went on to study law at Georgetown University and worked as a corporate lawyer, before turning to writing full time.

Lee has received the fellowship of fiction from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. Lee is currently working on the third and final installment, a novel about hagwons, or private institutions common in South Korea that are intended to supplement regular education. Currently, Lee is a Writer-in-Residence at Amherst College.

??? Do we need this?: In 2002, Lee’s short story, Motherland won the Peden Prize for Best Short Story and in 2004, her short story Axis of Happiness won the Narrative Prize from Narrative Magazine.

Event Details

Benaroya Hall — S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

200 University Street
Seattle, WA 98101

View directions.

Know Before You Go

  • The format for this event is a lecture by Min Jin Lee, followed by a 15-minute Q&A.

Transportation & Parking

This event will be held in the S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium, the largest event space at Benaroya Hall. 

Benaroya Hall is located at 200 University Street, directly across Second Avenue from the Seattle Art Museum. The public entrance to Benaroya Hall is along Third Avenue.

  • From Southbound I-5
    Take the Union Street exit (#165B). Continue onto Union Street and proceed approximately five blocks to Second Avenue. Turn left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.
  • From Northbound I-5
    Exit left onto Seneca Street (exit #165). Proceed two blocks and turn right onto Fourth Avenue. Continue two blocks. Turn left onto Union Street. Continue two blocks. Turn left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.
  • From Northbound Highway 99 (Aurora Avenue)
    Take the Seneca Street exit and move into the left lane. Turn left onto First Avenue and proceed one block. Take the next right (at the Hammering Man sculpture) onto University Street. Continue up the hill two blocks to Third Avenue. Turn left onto Third Avenue. Continue to the next block and turn left onto Union Street. Make the next left onto Second Avenue. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your immediate left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.
  • From Southbound Highway 99 (Aurora Avenue)
    Take the Denny Way/Downtown exit. Keep right and cross over Denny Way onto Wall Street. Proceed approximately five blocks and turn left onto Second Avenue. Continue south on Second Avenue approximately eight blocks. The Benaroya Hall parking garage will be on your left. The garage entrance is on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street.

By Bus
Benaroya Hall is served by numerous bus routes. Digital reader boards along Third Avenue display real-time bus arrival information. For details and trip planning tools, call Metro Rider Information at 206.553.3000 (voice) or 206.684.1739 (TDD), or visit Metro online. The Downtown Seattle Transit Tunnel, served by bus and light rail, has a stop just below the Hall (University Street Station).

Parking
The 430-car underground garage at Benaroya Hall provides direct access from the enclosed parking area into the Hall via elevators leading to The Boeing Company Gallery. Enter the garage on Second Avenue, just south of Union Street. Maximum vehicle height is 6’8″. Blink charging stations are available for electric vehicles. The event rate is $16.

Parking is also available at:

  • The Cobb Building (enter on University Street between Third and Fourth avenues).
  • The Russell Investments Center (enter on Union Street between First and Second avenues).
  • There are many other garages within a one-block radius of Benaroya Hall, along with numerous on-street parking options.

Accessibility

SAL is for everyone. We want all audience members to be able to experience our lectures and readings regardless of accessibility concerns. Accessibility services at our venues are provided at no cost to ticket holders. If you find you need to sit closer to the stage to accommodate your needs but find the cost of a Patron ticket prohibitive, then please contact us—we will seat you where you need to be, regardless of cost.

Open Captioning occurs at every event that takes place at Benaroya Hall. It is also always available upon request for all events in our other halls, with a two-week minimum notice. To make a request for Open Captioning services, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10.

Assisted Listening Devices, including Hearing Loop Assisted Listening Systems, are available at all of our venues, with the exception of Broadway Performance Hall. If you would like more information, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10.

ASL-Interpretated Events are always available upon request, with a two-week minimum notice. To make a request for ASL interpretation, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10.

Wheelchair Accessible Ticketing is available in all sections at our venues, and and our venues are fully accessible to ticket holders with physical mobility concerns. If you would like more information, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10.

For any further questions or requests, or to offer Seattle Arts & Lectures feedback on how we can be more accessible and inclusive, please reach out to our Patron Services Manager at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10.