Location: Temple Emanu-El, Olan Sanctuary
In conversation with Ben Fountain
Promotional Partner: Crow Collection of Asian Art
In 2000 Jhumpa Lahiri captivated readers when she received the Pulitzer Prize for her debut story collection, Interpreter of Maladies. The San Francisco Chronicle calls Lahiri “one of our most beautiful chroniclers of the aching disjunctions of emigration and family.” A master of short fiction, Lahiri was also awarded the 2017 PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story. Lahiri’s first novel, The Namesake, was a New York Times Notable Book; film director Mira Nair made the feature film starring Kal Pen.
Her recent nonfiction books include The Clothing of Books (2017), a short personal meditation on the art of the book jacket. In Other Words (2016), an autobiographical work written in Italian and translated into English, investigates the process of learning to express oneself in another language. Seeking full immersion, she moves to Rome with her family for “a trial by fire, a sort of baptism” into a new language and world. The New York Times Book Review calls it “gorgeous . . . the most unusual of self-portraits.”
Lahiri has received the National Humanities Medal and the Asian American Literary Award. She currently serves as Professor of Creative Writing at Princeton University.
“Lahiri is an elegant stylist, effortlessly placing the perfect words in the perfect order time and again so we’re transported seamlessly into another place.”—Vanity Fair