Elisa Gabbert presents Any Person is the Only Self, in conversation with Kamran Javadizadeh

June 26th
McNally Jackson Seaport
4 Fulton St.
RSVP Required — see below

Contagiously curious essays on reading, art, and the life of the mind, from the acclaimed author of The Unreality of Memory.

Any Person is the Only Self is absolutely brilliant, full of clarity and mystery and light: Gabbert effs the ineffable, describes the impossible to describe—the state of reading, what it means to remember. I’m still thinking about these essays, by which I mean still thinking about Gabbert’s own thoughts; I keep bringing them up in conversation. Elisa Gabbert is one of my favorite living writers.” —Elizabeth McCracken, author of The Souvenir Museum and Bowlaway

“A voice for our anxious, wired times, if ever there was one.”—Hephzibah Anderson, The Guardian

Who are we when we read? When we journal? Are we more ourselves alone or with friends? Right now or in memory? How does time transform us and the art we love?

In sixteen dazzling, expansive essays, the acclaimed essayist and poet Elisa Gabbert explores a life lived alongside books of all kinds: dog-eared and destroyed, cherished and discarded, classic and clichėd, familiar and profoundly new. She turns her witty, searching mind to the writers she admires, from Plath to Proust, and the themes that bind them—chance, freedom, envy, ambition, nostalgia, and happiness. She takes us to the strange edges of art and culture, from hair metal to surf movies to party fiction. Any Person Is the Only Self is a love letter to literature and to life, inviting us to think alongside one of our most thrilling and versatile critics.

Elisa Gabbert is the author of Normal Distance, The Unreality of Memory, and several other collections of poetry, essays, and criticism. She writes the On Poetry column for the New York Times, and her work has appeared in Harper’s Magazine, the Atlantic, the Believer, the New York Times Magazine, the New York Review of Books, and other publications.




Kamran Javadizadeh is a poetry critic, essayist, and associate professor of English at Villanova University. His writing has appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Review of Books, the London Review of Books, the Yale Review, PMLA, and elsewhere. He is the author of Institutionalized Lyric: American Poetry at Midcentury, which is forthcoming from Oxford University Press.


RSVP Below

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