Born 1987 Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands
Lives and works in
Oregon, United States
Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner is a poet, teacher and performance artist born in the Marshall Islands. Her poetry primarily focuses on cultural issues and threats faced by her Micronesian people. These include nuclear testing conducted in the Marshall Islands, militarism, the rising sea level as a result of climate change, forced migration, and economic adaptation. In 2014, she was chosen to address the UN Climate Summit in New York City, and in 2017 she performed at the opening weekend of the inaugural Honolulu Biennial. Her first book of poems, Iep Jāltok: Poems from a Marshallese Daughter, was published in 2017. Jetñil-Kijiner works across artistic disciplines with her poetry, often focusing on weaving, which underpins the traditional spiritual and social structure of Marshallese life.