Thursday, September 23 at 7:00PM pt
THE HARD CROWD
by RACHEL KUSHNER
in conversation with MITCHELL KAMIN
“The Hard Crowd is wild, wide-ranging, and unsparingly intelligent throughout.” —Taylor Antrim, Vogue
From a writer celebrated for her “chops, ambition, and killer instinct” (John Powers, Fresh Air), a career-spanning collection of spectacular essays about politics and culture.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Rachel Kushner has established herself as "the most vital and interesting American novelist working today" (The Millions) and as a master of the essay form. In The Hard Crowd, she gathers a selection of her writing from over the course of the last twenty years that addresses the most pressing political, artistic, and cultural issues of our times--and illuminates the themes and real-life experiences that inform her fiction.
In nineteen razor-sharp essays, The Hard Crowd spans literary journalism, memoir, cultural criticism, and writing about art and literature, including pieces on Jeff Koons, Denis Johnson, and Marguerite Duras. Kushner takes us on a journey through a Palestinian refugee camp, an illegal motorcycle race down the Baja Peninsula, 1970s wildcat strikes in Fiat factories, her love of classic cars, and her young life in the music scene of her hometown, San Francisco. The closing, eponymous essay is her manifesto on nostalgia, doom, and writing.
These pieces, new and old, are electric, vivid, and wry, and they provide an opportunity to witness the evolution and range of one of our most dazzling and fearless writers. "Kushner writes with startling detail, imagination, and gallows humor," said Leah Greenblatt in Entertainment Weekly, and, from Paula McLain in the Wall Street Journal: "The authority and precision of Kushner's writing is impressive, but it's the gorgeous ferocity that will stick with me."
Rachel Kushner’s first two novels, The Flamethrowers (2013) and Telex from Cuba (2008) were both New York Times bestsellers and finalists for the National Book Award in Fiction. Her novel The Mars Room was been an international bestseller, a finalist for the Booker Prize, and the National Book Critics Circle Award in Fiction, and winner of the 2018 Prix Médicis Etranger. Her most recent book, The Hard Crowd: Essays 2000-2020 was published in spring 2021. Her books are translated into 26 languages. She is a recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and lives in Los Angeles.
in conversation with
Mitch Kamin is an attorney and long-time Hancock Park resident. He is Partner and Co-Chair of the Commercial Litigation Practice Group at Covington & Burling LLP and, from 2003-2010, was President/CEO of Bet Tzedek Legal Services, one of the leading non-profit legal organizations in the United States. Mitch serves on the on the Board of Commissioners for the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority ("LAHSA") and previously was Chair of the Board of Commissioners for the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles. He is a graduate of Alexander Hamilton High School, U.C. Berkeley and Harvard Law School. Mitch and his wife Susan have three children, Nix, Owen and Ava.