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College students Sarah Levi and Yuko Torihara enjoy the launch of 'Propaganda Silk,' an Asian-American literary magazine.[Ranliang Hu/The Daily Pennsylvanian]

Penn's only Asian-American literary magazine, Propaganda Silk, launched its spring issue Friday evening at the Kelly Writers House with an art exhibition. Calling for readers to be authentic and to escape from classic stereotypes, the spring issue of Propaganda Silk contains poetry, pictures and short stories by Penn students, not all of whom are Asian.

"It's basically like a safe haven and a podium for Asian voices," said College sophomore and Propaganda Silk Co-Editor Yuko Torihara. "But it's not just for Asians -- it's an Asian-interest magazine."

Formerly known as Mosaic, Propaganda Silk publishes a biannual literary arts magazine that represents Penn's growing Asian demographic.

Torihara and College sophomore Jenny Suen took over as editors of the magazine this semester and began to take the publication in a new direction by changing the title and tightening the submission selection process to make the magazine more art-centered.

"We thought if we raised the quality of the magazine, we could reach out to more people," Torihara said, noting that Propaganda Silk is less like a magazine and more like an arts collaboration. "It's not 34th Street -- it's more of an anthology that you can keep for years."

To celebrate the launching of the revamped magazine, nearly 35 students and some faculty ate Thai food, viewed student art on display and read the magazine while lounging in the breezy Writers House courtyard.

Response to the launching was enthusiastic.

"I thought it was a very well-done effort at providing a foretaste of what the Asian community has to offer by way of art and literature and so on," said College sophomore Ahmed Moor.

"I think it was successful," said College sophomore Matty Sears, who had his photography on display at the exhibit. "I hope the success of the launching carries on into the future of the magazine."

Propaganda Silk's spring issue can be found at Houston Hall, Logan Hall and other buildings on campus.

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