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The Ivy welcomes Jess Row who will be in conversation with Ailish Hopper, to discuss Row's new book White Flights: Race, Fiction, and the American Imagination.
At the heart of White Flights, a meditation on whiteness in American fiction and culture, Jess Row ties “white flight”—the movement of white Americans into segregated communities, whether in suburbs or newly gentrified downtowns—to white writers setting their stories in isolated or emotionally insulated landscapes. Row uses brilliant close readings of work from well-known writers such as Don DeLillo, Annie Dillard, Richard Ford, and David Foster Wallace to examine the ways these and other writers have sought imaginative space for themselves at the expense of engaging with race.
White Flights aims to move fiction to a more inclusive place, and Row looks beyond criticism to consider writing as a reparative act. Row turns to the work of James Baldwin, Dorothy Allison, and James Alan McPherson to discuss interracial love in fiction, while also examining his own family heritage as a way to interrogate his position. A moving and provocative book that includes music, film, and literature in its arguments, White Flights is an essential work of cultural and literary criticism.
Jess Row is the author of the novel Your Face in Mine and the story collections The Train to Lo Wu and Nobody Ever Gets Lost. One of Granta’s Best of Young American Novelists of 2007, he lives in New York and teaches at the College of New Jersey.
Ailish Hopper is the author of two books of poetry and numerous essays; she also collaborates in community as a social practice artist. She's received fellowships from MacDowell Colony, Maryland State Arts Council, Yaddo, and her writing has appeared in American Poetry Review, Boston Review, Harvard Review, Poetry, and many other places.
TIME & DATE
Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - 7:00pm