Live via Zoom:
Wednesday, October 20, 7:30 PM ET
Virtual Panel Event: Novels and the News
Amitava Kumar presents A Time Outside This Time
In conversation with Robert Boynton, Francine Prose, and Parul Sehgal
Greenlight is delighted to welcome back writer and journalist Amitava Kumar for a special panel discussion in honor of his newest novel, A Time Outside This Time. Kumar channels Orwell in a metafictional narrative that follows professor and author Satya in writing a new novel, Enemies of the People, about the lies we tell ourselves and one another. A brilliant interrogation on life in a post-truth era and an attempt to imagine a time outside this one, A Time Outside This Time chronicles a writer’s creative response to the daily onslaught of fake news, memory, and the ways in which truth gives over to fiction. Author and journalist Robert Boynton (The New New Journalism), novelist and critic Francine Prose (The Vixen), and The New Yorker staff writer Parul Sehgal join Kumar for a virtual roundtable on the state of journalism, the power of the novel, and the challenge today of writing fiction in an age when we are surrounded by the fiction that is fake news.
Francine Prose photo credit: Stephanie Berger
When Satya, a professor and author, attends a prestigious artists' retreat to write, he finds the pressures of the outside world won’t let up: the president rages online; a dangerous virus envelops the globe; and the twenty-four-hour news cycle throws fuel on every fire. For most of the retreat fellows, such stories are unbearable distractions, but for Satya, who sees them play out in both America and his native India, these Orwellian interruptions begin to crystallize into an idea for his new novel, Enemies of the People, about the lies we tell ourselves and one another. Satya scours his life for instances in which truth bends toward the imagined and misinformation is mistaken as fact.
A blistering novel about a writer’s creative response to the daily onslaught of fake news, memory, and the ways in which truth gives over to fiction.
Looking back on the formative period of his youth, Kailash’s wry, vivid perception of the world he is in, but never quite of, unfurls in a brilliant melding of anecdote and annotation, picture and text. Building a case for himself, both as a good man in spite of his flaws and as an American in defiance of his place of birth, Kailash weaves a story that is at its core an incandescent investigation of love—despite, beyond, and across dividing lines.
Richard Ben Cramer
Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
The Vixen illuminates a period of history with eerily striking similarities to the current moment. Meanwhile it asks timeless questions: How do we balance ambition and conscience? What do social mobility and cultural assimilation require us to sacrifice? How do we develop an authentic self, discover a vocation, and learn to live with the mysteries of love, family, art, life and loss?