Interviews, readings, music, and more from the Los Angeles Review of Books.
Claudio Lomnitz's Nuestra America: A Jewish Latin American Odyssey
Kate Wolf talks with Claudio Lomnitz, author of Nuestra America: My Family in the Vertigo of Translation, which traces his family's history in the Jewish diaspora from the Eastern European region of Bessarabia to South America and onto Mexico. Claudio tells tales of his relatives, in particular, his maternal grandfather Misha Adler, a scholar and publisher involved in a number of revolutionary movements in the mid 20th century. He also relates his family's experiences to the struggles of marginalized peoples and migrants across the globe.
Also, Lauren Oyler, author of Fake Accounts, returns to recommend Norman Rush's Mating, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of this revered novel.
Lauren Oyler's Fake Accounts
Kate and Daya talk with Lauren Oyler, one of the country's leading literary critics, about her first novel, Fake Accounts; which is about a central character who breaks up with her boyfriend after discovering that he's an online conspiracy theorist. She then moves to Berlin where goes on a series of dates under different personas. The conversation addresses online culture and its influence on 21st century notions of subjectivity, secrecy, romance, and literature.
Also, Elizabeth Kolbert, author of Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future, returns to recommend two books by David Quammen - the highly prescient Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Pandemic (published in 2012) and The Song of the Dodo.
Valentine Special: Gay Bars and Boyfriends with Jeremy Atherton Lin and Brontez Purnell
A double dip, rife with romance, and right on time for a celebration of sex and love. First, Jeremy Atherton Lin joins Eric and Medaya to talk about his new book Gay Bar: Why We Went Out, which covers both the history of Gay Bars and Jeremy's personal history in London, San Francisco, and Los Angeles - with a consideration of how these iconic social institutions have fared in the age of hook-up apps and a year-long pandemic. Then, Eric and Kate are joined by Brontez Purnell to discuss his new work of autofiction, 100 Boyfriends, and reflect on queer time
From The Break to Bridgerton with Taylor Renee Aldridge and Patricia A Matthew
This week it's a doubleheader. First, Eric and Medaya, speak with Taylor Renee Aldridge, the Visual Arts Curator and Program Manager at the California Afrcian-American Museum, about a new exhibit Enunciated Life that centers around notions of surrender in Black Spiritual Life - inspired, in part, by the work of Ashon Crawley. Then, LARB contributor Patricia A. Matthew, Associate Professor of English at Montclair State University, joins us to talk about her recent article on the new Netflix hit series Bridgerton, Shondaland's Regency.
Elizabeth Kolbert, Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future
Hosts Kate and Medaya are joined by New Yorker staff writer and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Kolbert, whose new book is called Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future, in which Kolbert explores the many ways humans intervene in nature. Kolbert discusses invasive species, the sinking of New Orleans, the triage plan for climate change and how solar geoengineering might bleach our skies.
Also, Karla Cornejo Villavicencio, author of The Undocumented Americans, returns to recommend Children of the Land by Marcello Hernandez Castillo.
Kink Lit: A Conversation with R. O. Kwon and Garth Greenwell
In a special LARB Book Club edition of the Radio Hour, Eric Newman and Boris Dralyuk sit down with R. O. Kwon and Garth Greenwell, co-editors of Kink, a new anthology that aims to push the boundaries of traditional literary representations of love, desire, and sexual behavior. Kink features work by Alexander Chee, Roxane Gay, Carmen Maria Machado, and many other leading authors. Kwon and Greenwell speak of their goals for the anthology, the literary history of sex, and the politics in the background and at the heart of the book.