JustBuffalo
BABEL

Current Season

Thursday, October 9, 2014
8:00 PM

Colum McCann

Featured book: Let the Great World Spin

When Colum McCann released Let the Great World Spin in 2009, it entered the pantheon of “Great American Novels” almost instantly. By the end of the year, this polyphonic work set in the New York of the 1970s, but serving as an allegory of the city's resilient post-9/11 self, won the National Book Award and was named Amazon's #1 Book of the Year. Born in Dublin in 1965, McCann is the author of five novels which have been published in 30 languages. All were international bestsellers. He was named Esquire's Writer of the Year in 2003, and was awarded a French Chevalier des arts et lettres in 2009. His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review and The Irish Times. He currently teaches at Hunter College in New York.

Expanded BIO: http://colummccann.com/about-colum/

ABOUT Let the Great World Spin: http://colummccann.com/books/let-the-great-world-spin/

Click here for Colum McCann discussion questions.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
8:00 PM

David Henry Hwang

Featured book: Ch’inglish

Few writers have turned issues around ethnicity and identity into a widely acclaimed and award-winning career like David Henry Hwang. This Chinese American playwright is best known as the author of M. Butterfly. That enduring 1988 work, which won a Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, John Gassner Award, and Outer Critics Circle Award, was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Other plays include Obie Award winners, FOB and Golden Child, as well as Yellow Face which earned Hwang yet another Obie Award and Pulitzer Prize nomination. His play, Chinglish—the text that BABEL audiences will be focusing on—was named the Best New American Play of 2011 by TIME Magazine. Over his 30+ year career, Hwang has collaborated with Prince, Elton John and Tim Rice, Phil Collins, Philip Glass, and Aimee Mann, earning him numerous Tony Awards and two Grammy Awards.

Expanded BIO: https://www.playscripts.com/playwrights/bios/115

ABOUT Chinglish: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/23/theater/david-henry-hwangs-chinglish.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Click here for the Ch'inglish Reader's Guide

Thursday, March 26, 2015
8:00 PM

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Featured book: Americanah

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie grew up in Nigeria. Her work has been translated into thirty languages and has appeared in various publications including The New Yorker, Granta, The O. Henry Prize Stories, and Zoetrope. She is the author of the novels Purple Hibiscus, which won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and Half of a Yellow Sun, which won the Orange Prize and was a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, a New York Times Notable Book, and a People and Black Issues Book Review Best Book of the Year. Her latest novel, Americanah, has received numerous accolades including winning the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and being named one of The New York Times Ten Best Books of the Year. A recipient of a MacArthur “genius” award, she divides her time between the United States and Nigeria.

Expanded BIO: http://chimamanda.com/about-chimamanda/

ABOUT Americanah: http://www.randomhouse.com/book/878/americanah-by-chimamanda-ngozi-adichie#aboutthebook

Discussion Questions: http://www.randomhouse.com/book/878/americanah-by-chimamanda-ngozi-adichie#discussionquestions

Friday, April 17, 2015
8:00 PM

Patti Smith

Featured book: Just Kids

Named one of the most influential people in the world in TIME Magazine's TIME 100, Patti Smith is a poet, singer, songwriter, photographer, and fine artist. A seminal American artist, Smith has produced a body of work whose influence branches out through generations, across disciplines, and around the world. Her 1975 debut album, Horses, is routinely ranked as one of the greatest albums of all time. In 2010, she won the National Book Award for Non-Fiction for Just Kids, the bestselling memoir about her early days in New York and her friend Robert Mapplethorpe. Smithis also the author of Witt, Babel, Coral Sea, Woolgathering, and Auguries of Innocence. As a fine artist, Smith has exhibited at galleries and museums worldwide.

Click here for Patti Smith's expanded bio

ABOUT Just Kids: http://www.nationalbook.org/nba2010_nf_smith.html#.U6m734WiGKw

Discussion Questions: http://www.scribd.com/doc/60358244/Just-Kids-by-Patti-Smith-Book-Group-Discussion-Questions