Wise-up about the underlying structures of the Israel-Palestine conflict, lust in the style of Kafka, and hear about California’s (fictional) dystopian future at this week’s worthy readings and talks.
Friday, July 18
An Evening with Nir Evron
As the Israel-Palestine conflict is once again splashed across the international press, there’s never been a better time to become familiar with the work of Nir Evron. The Israeli filmmaker has long been fascinated with the physical architecture of the conflict, and this latest work—Endurance—is the third in his “Architectural Trilogy.” Each of the films centers on one particular building: for Endurance, that building is Rawabi, a residential gated community that also happens to be Palestine’s largest building project. Escape the often biased, rushed analysis of the mainstream media, and immerse yourself in Evron’s controversial, contemplative meditations on the construction of social and political histories. After the screening, New Museum curator Lauren Cornell will moderate a Q&A with the artist.
7pm, The New Museum (235 Bowery), $10
KafkaRotica at KGB Bar
KafkaRotica has been described as “the three-way love child of Franz Kafka, Christian Grey, and Regina Spektor,” by the site’s creator H.P. Xachariah. Conceived as a ‘home for erotica that doesn’t suck,’ Xachariah and friends pen parody erotica in the style of classic authors. Their tagline? “Cum for the parody porn, stay for the erotic diction.” If you prefer to experience erotica in a crowded environment, join members of the team for an evening of sexual intercourse-focused musical comedy at KGB Bar.
8pm, KGB Bar (85 East 4th St), $5 plus two drink minimum after entry
Monday, July 21
Abdi Nazemian and The Walk-in Closet
As a gay American-Iranian, Abdi Nazemian couldn’t escape the feeling that his viewpoint was not one oft-represented in popular culture. His debut novel, The Walk-In Closet, seeks to rectify that—using a straight white female protagonist named Kara Walker as an entry point into the lives of the Iranian-American elite. The book traces the close friendship between Kara and Bobby Ebadi—a gay man whose Iranian-American family welcome Kara to the intoxicating fold as Bobby’s girlfriend. Sooner or later, the truth must emerge—with raucous results. Abdi will be in conversation with Stacey Vanek Smith, a senior reporter at Marketplace.
7-8pm, Strand Book Store (828 Broadway), buy a copy of The Walk-in Closet or a $15 Strand gift card to attend
Tuesday, July 22
Brooklyn Launch: Edan Lepucki and California
Imagine the end of the world is nigh, and you’re pregnant. Now imagine you have fungi growing rampant on your body. All this, and more, happens to Frida—the main character of Edan Lepucki’s debut post-apocalyptic California. Set, you guessed it, in a future, blighted West Coast, the novel is already garnering high praise. According to Jennifer Egan, “Lepucki conjures a lush, intricate, deeply disturbing vision of the future, then masterfully exploits its dramatic possibilities.” Expecting a child, Frida and husband Cal must leave their defensive isolation and attempt to enter a nearby settlement—forcing them to choose whom they can trust. Join Lepucki, a staff writer for The Millions, for a reading and discussion of the epic, disquieting work.
7pm, WORD Bookstore (126 Franklin St, Greenpoint), FREE
Wednesday, July 23
Reading and signing of Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China with Leta Hong Fincher
Leta Hong Fincher is a sociologist at Beijing’s Tsinghua University, and has written for the likes of The New York Times and Dissent. Her new book explores the effects of sustained governmental campaigns that encourage women to marry young, in order to cut down the surplus of single men in the country. Fincher argues that women—terrified of becoming old maids at 27—are being shamed into matrimony (an institution which in China does little to protect women’s rights). In the process, home ownership among women and female participation in the labor force has declined, while gendered wealth inequality is increasing. Contrary to the popular myth that women have fared well in China’s economic boom, Fincher highlights gender-based structural discrimination, and in doing so elucidates over-arching problems with China’s economy, politics and development. Join the author for a discussion of her work.
7pm, Bluestockings (172 Allen St), FREE
Thursday, July 24
Meryl Meisler and A Tale of Two Cities: Disco Era Bushwick!
Meryl Meisler worked as a school teacher in cracked-out, riot-prone ’80s Bushwick—but she also carried a medium format camera everywhere she went, snapping epic photos of the ‘hood. Now, she’s collected those pictures, and placed them alongside her photographs of disco-fevered Manhattan in the same era. Together, the two sets of images offer a riotous portrait of two different universes in one city—at once hopelessly divided, and disconcertingly similar. Join Meisler for a special presentation of her work. She’ll also be signing copies.
7-8pm, Strand Book Store (828 Broadway), buy a copy of the book or a $15 gift card to attend