S7E7: Darryl Pinckney Remembers Elizabeth Hardwick and 1970s New York

20 Apr 2023
S7E7: Darryl Pinckney Remembers Elizabeth Hardwick and 1970s New York

Angelo Fick asks Darryl Pinckney about his book Come Back in September: A Literary Education on West Sixty-seventh Street, Manhattan.

Darryl remembers his friendship with critic and author Elizabeth Hardwick, who taught him that writing is a matter of reading. He reflects on his diaries, avant-garde New York in the 1970s, Robert Lowell, feminism and Black politics, The New York Review of Books and aging.

Angelo Fick is the Director of Research at ASRI. For two decades he taught across a variety of disciplines in the Humanities and Applied Sciences in universities in South Africa and Europe. He has written widely on post-millennial post-apartheid South Africa’s political economy, and is interested in broader issues of justice, freedom, and equality. His work has appeared in the Mail & Guardian, the Journal of Commonwealth Literature, the Johannesburg Review of Books, and English in Africa.

Darryl Pinckney is a long-time contributor to The New York Review of Books. He is the author of two novels, High Cotton (1992) and Black Deutschland (2016), and several works of nonfiction, including Out There: Mavericks of Black Literature (2002), Blackballed: The Black Vote and US Democracy (2014), and Busted in New York and Other Essays (2019). He has contributed to numerous other publications. His theatrical collaborations with director Robert Wilson have appeared internationally and at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. His most recent book is Come Back in September: A Literary Education on West Sixty-Seventh Street, Manhattan (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2022).

In this episode we are in solidarity with Mahvash Sabet and Fariba Kamalabadi. In November 2022, they were both unjustly sentenced to a second decade in prison in Iran. You can read more about their case here.

As tributes to them, Darryl reads “Hello Again” and “Lights Out” from Sabet’s Prison Poems as well as “Jerusalem” by James Fenton. Angelo reads Sabet’s poem “To Fariba Kamalabadi”.

Listen to the episode here: