Masha Gessen on Donald Trump’s Lessons in American Democracy
Acclaimed New York-based journalist Masha Gessen believes US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is ‘a thoroughly American creation that poses an existential threat to American democracy’. At this Wheeler Centre talk in Bendigo, she discusses the historical, economic and cultural circumstances that have enabled the ascendance of this utterly unorthodox political figure.
‘Whatever the outcome of the November election, the effect of Trump's attacks on the institutions and customs of American democracy will last and reverberate,’ Gessen said earlier this year. Join her for a discussion of Trump's past and of the implications of a Trump presidency. #gessenontrump
Presented in partnership with Bendigo Writers’ Festival and La Trobe University.
Masha Gessen is an acclaimed Russian-American journalist and the author of ten books of nonfiction, including bestsellers The Man Without a Face and Words Will Break Cement. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Slate, Vanity Fair, and many other publications, and has received numerous awards.
Her most recent book is The Future Is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia, which won the 2017 National Book Award for nonfiction. She is a staff writer at The New Yorker. A longtime resident of Moscow, she now lives in New York.
Emily Sexton is a former Head of Programming for the Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas.
She was the recipient of a prestigious Sidney Myer Creative Fellowship in 2014. Previously, she was Artistic Director of Next Wave (2010–14), where her key achievements were a radical rethink of an arts festival model, and a series of landmark commissions, publications and talks featuring First Nations artists, co-curated with Tony Albert and Tahjee Moar and titled Blak Wave.
In 2013, she was Artistic Director of the Ian Potter Cultural Trust’s 20th Anniversary Celebrations at the Melbourne Recital Centre. She was also Creative Producer for Melbourne Fringe Festival for 2008–10.
Emily has been a proud Board Member for Arena Theatre Company, Snuff Puppets and Theatre Network Victoria, and is alumnus of the Australia Council’s Emerging Leaders Program (2011). She is a regular peer assessor for the Australia Council for the Arts, Creative Victoria, and other philanthropic trusts and foundations. Emily holds a Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communications, English) from the University of Sydney (2005). She is a regular host and facilitator for writers’ festivals and arts organisations around Australia.
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