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Morgan Jerkins, This Will Be My Undoing

Friday, February 23, 2018 - 7:00pm

Online ordering has ended for this event. If you cannot attend the event, but would like a copy of This Will Be My Undoing signed for you by Morgan Jerkins, please stop by or call Bookshop Santa Cruz at 831-423-0900 by 6:30 pm to purchase your copy to be signed. If you are able to attend the event, but have not yet purchased a copy of Morgan Jerkins's book, please do so at Bookshop Santa Cruz before the event begins at 7 pm, or following her talk. Thank you!

Bookshop Santa Cruz welcomes Morgan Jerkins for a discussion and signing of her debut collection of essays, This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist In (White) America. Ms. Jerkin's book is Bookshop's first selection in our Women's Voices program.

As one of the fiercest and most powerful critics writing today, Morgan Jerkins is a rising star in the literary world. Praised by such icons as Roxane Gay and Alexander Chee, Jerkins establishes herself in This Will Be My Undoing as an insightful and brutally honest writer who isn’t afraid of tackling tough and controversial subjects. Not just a personal essay collection, Jerkins mines her own experience growing up black and female for moments that lead into bigger, more universal discussions about urgent issues facing black women today, such as the paradox of black female sexuality, dating men who say they “don’t see color”, and being objectified, silenced, and marginalized in ways that are rarely acknowledged in our country’s larger discussion about inequality.

Set against the backdrop of a divided nation under the Trump administration when racism and misogyny are on full public display, Jerkins masterfully tackles real issues about intersectionality, diversity, and privilege. Whether Jerkins is writing about the highly problematic Rachel Dolezal, “good hair,” being a black visitor in Russia, or her complex relationship with her own physical body, the portrait that emerges in This Will Be My Undoing is deeply intimate yet entirely universal.

“From one essay to the next, Jerkins weaves the personal with the public and political in compelling, challenging ways. Her prodigious intellect and curiosity are on full display throughout this outstanding collection. The last line of the book reads, ‘You should’ve known I was coming,’ and indeed, in this, too, Jerkins is prescient. With this collection, she shows us that she is unforgettably here, a writer to be reckoned with.” —Roxane Gay

“Jerkins’s debut collection of essays forces readers to reckon with the humanity black women have consistently been denied. Her writing is personal, inviting, and fearless as she explores the racism and sexism black women face in America... [a] gorgeous and powerful collection.” — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Read this Elle article by Roxane Gay,

And this Los Angeles Times article by

Morgan Jerkins is a 25-year-old writer living in New York. She graduated from Princeton University with an AB in comparative literature, specializing in nineteenth-century Russian literature and postwar modern Japanese literature, and she has an MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars. She has written for The New Yorker, Vogue, New York Times, The Atlantic, ELLE, Rolling Stone, Lenny Letter, The New Republic, and BuzzFeed, among many others. She's also a Contributing Editor at Catapult.