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Thursday, February 16, 2023 4pm

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How do we create art? How do we become ourselves? In this lecture, Jennifer Finney Boylan considers the way revision and reinvention serve—not only as necessary aspects of the creative process—but also as a model for the way we live our lives, and create ourselves, through trial and error. By examining music (including Johann Sebastian Bach’s Goldberg Variations); pentimenti in works of art; drafts of works by Emily Dickinson, Raymond Carver, and Charles Dickens; and, above all, by telling the story of her own evolving relationship with her teacher and mentor, author John Barth, Boylan will show that the transition that trans people go through is, in fact, a process both familiar and universal: a journey made, day by day, page by page, in hopes of finding the next best draft of the self.

Following her talk, Boylan will be joined in conversation by Richard Russo, 2002 Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls (Knopf, 2001) as well as eight other novels, two collections of stories, and a memoir. His latest book, Somebody’s Fool, will be released in July 2023.

Contact Info: events@radcliffe.harvard.edu

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