5 free events: 2019 Brooklyn Book Festival Special Edition

5 free events: 2019 Brooklyn Book Festival Special Edition

Welcome to a special edition of 5 Free Events! Rather than our usual selection of dance, music and visual art exhibitions in the city, we’re focusing exclusively on the lineup from this year’s Brooklyn Book Festival. The annual event, held each September, brings together readers and writers for a weekend of lectures, workshops and more.  See what piqued our interest below and find the full roster of activities here.

Susan Choi and Meg Wolitzer in Conversation
St. Francis College Founder’s Hall, Brooklyn
Sept. 22; 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Author Meg Wolitzer (“The Female Persuasion”) and Pulitzer Prize finalist Susan Choi (“Trust Exercise”) will lead a conversation about what it means to come of age as a woman and writer in today’s cultural climate. The panel will be moderated by Katy Waldman of The New Yorker.

“If We Didn’t Laugh, We’d Cry: The Comedy of Tragedy”
North Stage, Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn
Sept. 22; 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Ryan Chapman (“Riots I Have Known”), Binnie Kirshenbaum (“Rabbits for Food”) and Rawi Hage (“Beirut Hellfire Society”) explore how comedy is used as both a coping and defense mechanism to process trauma. The panel will be moderated by Rick Moody.

Community Bookstore Presents “Love Is or It Ain’t: A Tribute to Toni Morrison”
St. Francis College Founder’s Hall, Brooklyn
Sept. 22; 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison, who died on Aug. 5, is remembered in this panel discussion featuring her collaborators and admirers. Morrison’s longtime editor Robert Gottlieb (“Avid Reader”) joins Saidiya Hartman (“Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments: Intimate Histories of Social Upheaval”) and Nafissa Thompson-Spires (“Heads of the Colored People”) for the panel on the “Beloved” author’s life and work, while National Book Foundation Executive Editor Lisa Lucas moderates.

“The Paths to Pride”
Brooklyn Law School Moot Courtroom, Brooklyn
Sept. 22; 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.
Samra Habib (“We Have Always Been Here”), William Dameron (“The Lie: A Memoir of Two Marriages, Catfishing and Coming Out”) and Ryan O’Callaghan (“My Life on the Line: How the NFL Damn Near Killed Me, and Ended up Saving My Life”) come together for a frank discussion about coming out and what it means to be a member of LGBTQ+ communities. The panel will be moderated by Brian Vines, chief correspondent at BRIC.

“Not My Homeland – But My Home”
Brooklyn Law School Moot Courtroom, Brooklyn
Sept 22; 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. 
Dina Nayeri (“The Ungrateful Refugee”) and Susan Kuklin (“We Are Here to Stay: Voices of Undocumented Youth”) gather for a discussion about the anger, hopes and fears they’ve heard from fellow members of the immigrant community. This panel will be moderated by Maryellen Fullerton, a professor at Brooklyn Law School and expert in asylum and refugee law.