Born into a military family in Japan, Dan Taulapapa McMullin grew up on Tutuila Island in Sāmoa Amelika (American Samoa). He identifies as fa`afafine, a person of the third gender in traditional Samoan culture. His work in the visual arts and poetry explores colonialism, exoticism, and the body. His book Coconut Milk (University of Arizona Press, 2013) was on the American Library Association's 2014 Over the Rainbow List of LGBT Books for Adult Readers. He also co-edited (with Yuki Kihara) Samoan Queer Lives (Little Island Press, 2018), a collection of stories from fa`afafine and LGBTIQ Samoans.