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Hybrid Hybrid Event
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(Hybrid) How to Criticize with Lauren Oyler

Wed 15 November 2023 @ 19 h 00 - 20 h 30

Hybrid Hybrid Event

Inspired by the adage “everyone's a critic,” Scholar of Note Lauren Oyler shares how to develop and express taste in literature.

In-person registration for this event is now closed. Please fill out the form below to register to attend online.

The first step to becoming a better writer is becoming a better reader. But what makes a piece of writing—whether a book or blog post, essay or cover letter—”good”? Who determines that criteria, and does it even matter? 

Join Scholar of Note Lauren Oyler for a special 90-minute session devoted to criticism. Hailed “the pre-eminent and most widely read critic of her generation” by the Times, Lauren is celebrated for her irreverence, wit, and willingness to dissent from popular opinion. Blending personal narrative with cutting analysis, her writing seizes upon micro- and macro-phenomena, from semicolons to the moralization of art, in order to capture the essence of life and culture in the twenty-first century. 

At the Library, after a preliminary discussion of her work and an audience Q&A, Lauren will engage participants in a criticism workshop. We’ll talk about our favorite books, our least favorite books, and why we love what we love and hate what we hate. Using texts from Renata Adler, Patricia Lockwood, Susan Sontag, and others, we’ll discuss how to respond critically and creatively to others’ work, and learn reading techniques that will help you become a more attentive, imaginative, and occasionally even harsh reader and writer. Book recommendations are included.

Learn more: 

Lauren’s forthcoming book No Judgment, scheduled for release in March 2024, presents a series of essays on “gossip, Goodreads, Berlin, autofiction, vulnerability, anxiety, spoilers, and revenge.” Read about it here

Lauren is famous for her honest, and intelligent essays on life and culture, from astrology to the digital age. No topic is off limits for her. Read her take-down of celebrity worship, cruise lines the wellness industry in a recent article.

About the speaker:

Lauren Oyler is a critic and novelist based in Berlin. Her writing appears regularly in the New Yorker, the New York Times, Harper’s, the London Review of Books, and many other publications. Her first novel, Fake Accounts, was published in 2021 and shortlisted for the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for comic fiction. A collection of her essays, all previously unpublished, will appear in 2024. She is a 2023—24 Scholar of Note at the American Library in Paris. 

The American Library in Paris Scholar of Note program is generously sponsored by the de Groot Foundation.

Important information: The discussion will be available both online and in person. While the conversation will happen in person (Oyler will appear in the Reading Room), the Library will stream the conversation on Zoom for a live viewing experience. Both in-person and online attendees will be able to pose questions. Participation in the workshop will be limited to in-person attendees only.

Attendance at this event constitutes permission for your photograph or video to be taken at the event and used by the American Library in Paris for marketing, promotional, pedagogical, or other purposes.

Evenings with an Author are free and open to the public (with a 10€ suggested donation)
thanks to the generous support of Gregory Annenberg Weingarten of GRoW @ Annenberg.

In-person registration for this event is now closed. Please fill out the form below to register to attend online.


Wed 15 November 2023
19 h 00 min - 20 h 30 min
Event Categories:
(Hybrid) How to Criticize with Lauren Oyler
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