About the event

David Denby has been a staff writer and film critic at The New Yorker since 1998. His first article for the magazine, “Does Homer Have Legs?,” published in 1993, grew into a book about reading the literary canon at Columbia University, “Great Books: My Adventures with Homer, Rousseau, Woolf, and Other Indestructible Writers of the Western World,” (1996). Two other essays in that book, on Shakespeare’s “King Lear” and on Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness,” also first appeared in The New Yorker. He has written on such subjects as the Scottish Enlightenment, the writers Susan Sontag and James Agee, and the movie directors Pedro Almodóvar, Clint Eastwood, and the Coen brothers.

Before joining the magazine, Denby was the film critic for New York magazine for twenty years. His writing has also appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Review of Books, and The New Republic. In 1991, he received a National Magazine Award for his articles on high-end audio. Denby is the editor of “Awake in the Dark: An Anthology of Film Criticism, 1915 to the Present,” which was published in 1977. His book “American Sucker,” published in 2003, chronicles his misadventures in amateur investing in the midst of the dot-com boom and bust. “Snark” (2009) was an attack on the habits of low sarcasm encouraged by the Internet. He collected his best movie writing from the magazine in “Do the Movies Have a Future?” (2012). He is currently working on a book about high-school reading, a kind of prequel to “Great Books.”