The NYU Skirball Book Club has met in our theater’s lobby, as well as online. It’s a great place to discover new books and chat with new people.
This fall, we’ve paired each of the curricular themes in our Fall 2022 season with a complementary text – including fiction, non-fiction and poetry. This semester, our Book Club picks are the five winners of the 2021 National Book Awards. Each book shares themes or concepts with the curricular theme and performances. Consider it a cross-genre take on comparative literature. Find out more and join the discussion.
NEED A COPY OF THE BOOK?
Order a copy from our bookshop.org shop, and NYU Skirball will receive a portion of the proceeds.
Spring 2022 @ Virtual Book Club
Fall 2021 @ Virtual Book Club
Fall 2020 @ Virtual Book Club
Virtual Book Club Spring/Summer 2020
Thursday, Jan 23, 2020
The White Book by Han Kang
Paired with the Wooster Group: A Pink Chair (In Place of a Fake Antique)
While on a writer’s residency, a nameless narrator wanders the twin white worlds of the blank page and snowy Warsaw. A fictional journey inspired by an older sister who died in her mother’s arms, a few hours old.
Thursday, Feb 13, 2020
The Gift by Barbara Browning
Paired with Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker: Mitten Wir Im Leben Sind
Barbara Andersen begins spamming people indiscriminately with ukulele covers of sentimental songs. A series of inappropriate intimacies ensues.
Saturday, Feb 22, 2020
Bunny by Mona Awad
Paired with Florentina Holzinger: Apollon
A down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, friendship and desire, and the fantastic and terrible power of the imagination.
Friday, Feb 28, 2020
The End of the Moment we Had by Toshiki Okada
Paired with Toshiki Okada: Eraser Mountain
Two brilliant, multi-layered stories, demonstrating the fluidity and richness of this extraordinarily gifted writer’s language and ideas.
Sunday, March 8, 2020
The Trial by Franz Kafka
“Someone must have been spreading lies about Josef K, for without having done anything wrong he was arrested one morning.” Kafka’s cult classic.
Join us for a marathon reading of “The Trial,” translated by Breon Mitchell, on March 8th.
Friday, March 13, 2020
Amateur by Thomas Page McBee
Paired with Israel Galván: Fla.Co.Men
A trans man trains to fight in a charity match at Madison Square Garden while struggling to untangle the vexed relationship between masculinity and violence.
Friday, April 3, 2020
Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi
Paired with Carolina Bianchi: Lobo
Ada was born with one foot on the other side. Having prayed her into existence, her parents struggle to deal with the volatile and contradictory spirits peopling their troubled girl.
Friday, April 10, 2020
On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
Paired with Madboots Dance: Holy
A letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. At once a witness to the fraught yet undeniable love between a single mother and her son, it is also a brutally honest exploration of race, class, and masculinity.
Friday, April 17, 2020
Space Struck by Paige Lewis
Paired with Pavel Zustiak: Hebel
Space Struck explores, in verse, the wonders and cruelties occurring within the realms of nature, science, and religion.
Friday, May 1, 2020
How We Fight for Our Lives by Saeed Jones
Paired with Les Ballets C de la B: Requiem Pour L
Haunted and haunting — a coming-of-age memoir. Jones tells the story of a young, black, gay man from the South as he fights to carve out a place for himself, within his family, within his country, within his own hopes, desires, and fears.
Friday, Sept 6, 2019
Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie (2017)
Paired with JoAnne Akalaitis: BAD NEWS! I was there…
Two families’ fates are inextricably, devastatingly entwined, in this searing novel that asks: What sacrifices will we make in the name of love? Home Fire reimagines Sophocles’s play Antigone unfolding among British Muslims.
Friday, Sept 13, 2019
The Book of Delights by Ross Gay (2019)
Paired with Philippe Quesne: The Moles
One of today’s most original literary voices offers up a genre-defying volume of lyric essays written over one tumultuous year. The first nonfiction book from award-winning poet Ross Gay is a record of the small joys we often overlook in our busy lives.
Friday, Sept 20, 2019
White Noise by Don DeLillo (1985)
Paired with Daniel Fish: White Noise
White Noise tells the story of Jack Gladney, his fourth wife, Babette, and four ultramodern offspring as they navigate the rocky passages of family life to the background babble of brand-name consumerism.
Friday, Sept 27, 2019
Death Threat by Vivek Shraya (2019)
Paired with Marr/Truscott/Martinez: Wild Bore
In the fall of 2017, the acclaimed writer and musician Vivek Shraya began receiving vivid and disturbing transphobic hate mail from a stranger. Celebrated artist Ness Lee brings these letters and Shraya’s responses to them to startling life in Death Threat, a comic book that, by its existence, becomes a compelling act of resistance.
Friday, Oct 11, 2019
Secret Historian by Justin Spring (2010)
Paired with John Kelly: Underneath the Skin
Drawn from the secret, never-before-seen diaries, journals, and sexual records of the novelist, poet, and university professor Samuel M. Steward, Secret Historian is a sensational reconstruction of one of the more extraordinary hidden lives of the twentieth century.
Friday, Oct 18, 2019
Advantages of Being Evergreen by Oliver Baez Bendorf (2019)
Paired with ICE: George Lewis’ Soundlines
This book offers a topography of the body — each poem, a dropped pin, locating across a broad intricate landscape: memory, hunger, tenderness, grief, and fear.
Friday, Oct 25, 2019
Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl by Andrea Lawlor (2017)
Paired with Mette ingvartsen: to come (extended)
It’s 1993 and Paul’s got a secret: he’s a shapeshifter. Oscillating wildly from Riot Grrrl to leather cub, Women’s Studies major to trade, Paul transforms his body at will in a series of adventures that take him from Iowa City to Boystown to Provincetown and finally to San Francisco — a journey through the deep queer archives of struggle and pleasure.
Friday, Nov 8, 2019
The Lonesome Bodybuilder by Yukiko Motoya (2018)
Paired with Big Dance Theatre: The Road Awaits Us
In these eleven stories, the individuals who lift the curtains of their orderly homes and workplaces are confronted with the bizarre, the grotesque, the fantastic, the alien—and find a doorway to liberation. The English-language debut of one of Japan’s most fearlessly inventive young writers.