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(In Person at the Center for Fiction) Stitches, Secrets, Shame: Jazmina Barrera, Christina MacSweeney, and Leanne Shapton present Cross-Stitch

Thu 16 November 2023 @ 19 h 30 - 20 h 30

In-person at the Brooklyn Center for Fiction, the International Library and Celebrate Mexico Now! present Jazmina Barrera's Cross-Stitch.

In person at the Center for Fiction (Brooklyn, NY) and over Zoom, join Jazmina BarreraChristina MacSweeney, and Leanne Shapton for a conversation about travel, art, identity, and translation.

Stitches, secrets, shame: Mexican writer Jazmina Barrera’s first novel, Cross-Stitch, translated into English by Christina MacSweeney, stitches together a coming-of-age story with a feminist history and theory of embroidery. Mila, Citlali, and Dalia, childhood friends now college-aged, leave Mexico City for the London of The Clash and the Paris of Gustave Courbet. They anticipate the bookstores, cafés, and crushes, but not the realization that they are steadily, inevitably growing apart.

That feels like forever ago. Mila, now a writer and a new mother, has just published a book on needlecraft, an art form long dismissed as “women’s work.” After hearing that her old friend Citlali has drowned, Mila begins to reminisce about their years together for the first time since becoming a wife and mother. What has come of all the nights the three friends spent embroidering together in silence? 

The discussion will take place at the Center for Fiction in Brooklyn, New York. The conversation will be streamed on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions.

Access to this event requires registration through the Center for Fiction. Click on the button below to RSVP.

About the speakers:

Jazmina Barrera’s books have been published in nine countries and translated to English, Dutch, Portuguese, Italian, and French. Her book Cuerpo extraño (Foreign Body) was awarded the Latin American Voices prize by Literal Publishing, and On Lighthouses was chosen for the Indie Next list by IndieBound. Linea Nigra was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle’s Gregg Barrios Book in Translation Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Autobiography Prize, CANIEM’s Book of the Year award, and the Amazon Primera Novela (First Novel) Award. She is editor and co-founder of Ediciones Antílope. She lives in Mexico City.

Christina MacSweeney’s work has been recognized in a number of important awards, and her translation of Valeria Luiselli’s The Story of My Teeth was awarded the Valle Inclán Translation Prize and also shortlisted for the Dublin Literary Award. Her most recent translations include works by Daniel Saldaña París, Elvira Navarro, Verónica Gerber Bicecci, Julián Herbert, and Karla Suárez.

Leanne Shapton is a Canadian author, artist, illustrator, art director and editor based in New York City. She is the author of Swimming Studies, which won the National Book Critic’s Circle Award Award for autobiography in 2012; The Native Trees of Canada; Was She PrettyImportant Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, Including Books, Street Fashion, and Jewelry; Sunday Night Movies;  Women in Clothes co-edited with Sheila Heti and Heidi Julavits; and most recently Guestbook: Ghost Stories. Leanne published a children’s book in 2018 called Toys TalkingShe has taught creative writing in the graduate degree programs at Columbia University and Sarah Lawrence College. Leanne was the art director of the New York Times op ed page, is co-founder of the non-profit art bio publisher J&L Books, and since 2021 has worked as the art editor at The New York Review of Books.

About the International Library series: 

This conversation is part of the International Library, a new series launched in collaboration with the Center for Fiction in Brooklyn and the Center for the Art of Translation in San Francisco which will offer conversations across time, place, and language. 

The International Library celebrates the live diffusion of in-person conversations in the hope of connecting new audiences across land and sea for a collective, intercultural experience. These conversations will broach deeper questions about writing and translation as we learn to think critically about how stories are told, investigating the points of view, the timing of the translations, and the intended or assumed audiences as well as inspiration, philosophy, and craft.


Thu 16 November 2023
19 h 30 min - 20 h 30 min
Event Categories:
(In Person at the Center for Fiction) Stitches, Secrets, Shame: Jazmina Barrera, Christina MacSweeney, and Leanne Shapton present Cross-Stitch
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