The highlight of the Buffalo Humanities Festival was the reading and on-stage interview (with David Schmid) of the very funny and engaging Gary Shteyngart. Shteyngart read from his memoir, Little Failure.
The Buffalo Humanities Festival Book Group met to discuss Gary Shteyngart’s memoir, Little Failure, at Betty’s Restaurant on Monday evening, September 22nd. Thanks so much to Erik Seeman, Humanities Institute Director, Betty’s Restaurant, and our guests for an engaging and amusing discussion of immigration, Jewish parenting, and childhood in the former Soviet Union.
Sep 17, 2014 Posted in Buffalo Rising
Author: Erik Seeman
Buffalo’s literary community is abuzz about Gary Shteyngart’s upcoming appearance Friday, September 26, at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery.
“Gary Shteyngart is one of the smartest, most original, and funniest writers in America,” says novelist Mick Cochrane, professor of English and Lowery Writer-in-Residence at Canisius College. “For readers and students of literature here in Buffalo to have the chance to see and hear him as part of the Humanities Festival is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. My students and I couldn’t be more excited.”
Shteyngart, author of three popular novels and the New York Times–bestselling memoir Little Failure, speaks at the Albright-Knox at 8:00pm on the 26th. The event features a reading, on-stage interview, and book signing. A limited number of VIP tickets are available for a wine-and-cheese reception with the author, beginning at 7:00pm.
Shteyngart’s visit kicks off the first Buffalo Humanities Festival, presented by the University at Buffalo Humanities Institute in cooperation with Canisius College, Niagara University, SUNY Buffalo State, and SUNY Fredonia.
The Festival continues the next day with talks, music, conversations, films, and food, at the Burchfield Penney Art Center and SUNY Buffalo State. The Festival’s theme is “Migration Nation: Moving Stories.” Tickets for all events are available at buffalohumanities.org.
Born to a Russian-Jewish family in Leningrad in 1972, Shteyngart migrated to the United States seven years later. His three novels – The Russian Debutante’s Handbook (2002), Absurdistan (2006), and Super Sad True Love Story (2010) – all explore the immigrant experience using dark humor and powerful storytelling.
But many critics feel that his memoir, Little Failure, is his greatest achievement. Zadie Smith, author of White Teeth, calls Little Failure Shteyngart’s “finest book yet.” The Los Angeles Times says it is “as vivid, original, and funny as [anything] contemporary U.S. literature has to offer.”
Readers interested in discussing Little Failure in advance of Shteyngart’s appearance are invited to join the Humanities Festival Book Group on Monday, September 22, from 7:30pm to 9:30pm at Betty’s Restaurant, 370 Virginia Avenue. Joseph Conte of UB’s English Department leads the conversation. Tickets, available on the Festival website, are $8 each and include drinks and light fare.
Sep 9, 2014 Posted in Buffalo Rising
On Monday, September 22nd, the public is invited to the first ever Humanities Festival Book Group for an engaging discussion of Gary Shteyngart’s New York Times bestselling memoir, Little Failure, at Betty’s restaurant, 370 Virginia Street, from 7:30 to 9:30pm. The Los Angeles Times calls Little Failure “an ecstatic depiction of survival, guilt, and perseverance… as vivid, original, and funny as [anything] contemporary U.S. literature has to offer.” UB Professor of English Joseph Conte will be on hand at Betty’s to lead the discussion, and light fare and drinks will be served. The cost of the event is $8, and tickets are available at buffalohumanities.org.
Gary Shteyngart will be speaking later that same week at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery on the evening of Friday, September 26th as the keynote speaker of this year’s first annual Buffalo Humanities Festival, “Migration Nation: Moving Stories.” “In the Humanities Festival Book Group, we invite members of the public to really dig in to this moving and hilarious book about Shteyngart’s experiences growing up as a Russian Jewish immigrant in New York. It is also a terrific way to warm up for the Buffalo Humanities Festival,” stated Erik Seeman, Director of UB’s Humanities Institute.
Little Failure is available for purchase at Talking Leaves Bookstore as well as at most major bookstores. Tickets for the Humanities Festival Book Group and for all Festival events can be purchased at the buffalo humanities festival website.
Monday, September 22, 7:30-9:30pm
Humanities Festival Book Group: Join us for a discussion of Gary Shteyngart’s Little Failure, led by Joseph Conte of UB’s English Department, at Betty’s Restaurant, 370 Virginia Street. Food, wine, and stimulating conversation at one of Buffalo’s most beloved restaurants!
$8 per person to attend. Appetizers and one glass of wine, beer, or a soft drink included in the price.