• Events
Mar 21
Oasis Dreams – Screening and Q+A Alliance Française de Los Angeles 10390 Santa Monica Boulevard, Suite #120, Los Angeles, CA 90025
The Nature of Forgetting The New Victory Theater 209 West 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036

Week in Review

By Jasmine Bissete

Join us at the Night of Philosophy and Ideas!

A Night of Philosophy and Ideas is an all-night marathon of philosophical debate, performances, screenings, readings, and music. This free 12-hour exchange of ideas will feature top philosophers from around the world. The annual event will be held at Brooklyn’s Central Library from Saturday, January 27 at 7 pm to Sunday, January 28th at 7 am. Guests include Isabelle Alfandary, Julia Cagé, Geneviève Fraisse, Juliette Volcler, Cynthia Fleury, Jean-Godefroy Bidima, Lionel Ruffel, Arnaud Esquerre, Abdennour Bidar, Jean-Louis Fabiani, Yves Citton, and Jul. The Night of Philosophy and Ideas is co-presented by the Brooklyn Public Library and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy.

Continued Acclaim for Slimani

In her New Yorker profile on Leïla Slimani, “The Killer-Nanny Novel that Conquered France,” Lauren Collins surveys the depths and complexity of the author’s groundbreaking approach to dissecting the family unit. Collins writes, “The subjects Slimani takes on, including infanticide, are so unmentionable you feel you are tempting the fates by mere proximity.”  Aida Edemariam, who profiled Slimani for The Guardian, sheds light on the intersection of the familial and professional dynamics central to The Perfect Nanny. She notes, “Slimani’s brilliantly executed insight is that there is great emotional jeopardy for everyone involved…It would have been easy, and narratively effective, for Slimani to build a picture of a psychopath…she achieves the far more interesting feat, however, of playing entirely valid points of view against each other.” The Perfect Nanny (translated by Sam Taylor) was recently named in The Millions’ list of the most anticipated books of 2018, along with Négar Djavadi’s Disoriental (translated by Tina Kover) and Noémi Lefebvre’s Blue Self-Portrait (translated by Sophie Kover). Both Slimani and Djavadi will be on tour in the US this April.

The Years: Annie Ernaux’s “Collective Autobiography” Reviewed by the New York Times

In The Years, Annie Ernaux achieves the feat of “reclaiming the past in the internet’s ‘infinite present’ “, per Edmund White’s New York Times review. White coins Ernaux’s memoir a “‘WE-moir,’ the group memory of her generation.” He notes that “throughout ‘The Years,’ Ernaux traces the collapse of Catholic prudishness as it’s attacked by secularism, the pill, the legalization of abortion and the women’s movement.” A theme central to Ernaux’s book is “how we’ve been gradually led, guilt-free, into greater and greater levels of consumerism…she sees history as sociological and the economy as determinative.” The Years may be a book about the past, but it is even more relevant in the present; it is “an earnest, fearless book, a 'Remembrance of Things Past' for our age of media domination and consumerism, for our period of absolute commodity fetishism.” The Years was translated by Alison L. Strayer and is available from Seven Stories Press.

Mabanckou and Didi-Huberman Longlisted for the PEN America Literary Awards

Alain Mabanckou’s Black Moses and George Didi-Huberman’s Bark have both been longlisted for the PEN Translation Prize, which recognizes a translation of prose from any language into English published in 2017. Helen Stevenson translated Black Moses, which was a finalist for the Man Booker International Prize and has been described as “Oliver Twist in 1970s Africa.” Bark is a poignant exploration of Auschwitz-Birkenau, translated by Samuel E. Martin. Reflections by Didi-Huberman are placed alongside the photographs from his visit, creating “a personal account, drawing not on the theoretical apparatus of scholarship but on Didi-Huberman’s own history, memory, and knowledge,” per The MIT Press.