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Percival Everett & Cord Jefferson

Monday, June 3, 2024
7:30pm Pacific Time
KQED Broadcast: 07/07/2024
Venue: Sydney Goldstein Theater

Before his novel Erasure was adapted into the hit film American Fiction, Percival Everett was already one of the literary world’s most acclaimed talents, appreciated both for his inimitable characters and storylines, as well as the uncommon variety of genres in which he wrote. Since Everett’s first novel in 1983, he has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, for Telephone, and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, for The Trees. Refusing to be tied to a single topic or genre, Everett has published poetry, refashionings of Greek plays, and westerns, along with the satirical novels that are perhaps his best known works. His newest novel, James, is a reimagining of Huckleberry Finn, and has already been touted as “a canon-shattering great book.”

Cord Jefferson made his feature writing and directorial debut with American Fiction, a film based on Percival Everett’s acclaimed novel Erasure. The acclaimed movie earned him the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. His television credits include Watchmen, The Good Place, Succession, Station Eleven, Master of None, and The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore. Prior to writing for television, Jefferson was a journalist, serving as the West Coast editor for Gawker and contributing to The New York Times, National Geographic, NPR, USA Today, MSNBC, Bookforum, and elsewhere.

Jelani Cobb is Dean of Columbia University School of Journalism and a staff writer at The New Yorker. He is author of To the Break of Dawn: A Freestyle on the Hip Hop AestheticThe Substance of Hope: Barack Obama and the Paradox of Progress, and he is co-editor of The Matter of Black Lives and The Essential Kerner Commission Report.

Limited number of tickets include a copy of James.

Everett photo by Michael Avedon