Olivia Laing: Everybody
‘A free-wheeling and joyful exploration . . . What her earlier work did for loneliness, this book does for liberation.’
In an exclusive broadcast event, the author discusses her new work of non-fiction, Everybody – a book about liberation and the body.
The body is a source of pleasure and of pain, at once hopelessly vulnerable and radiant with power.
At a moment in which basic rights are increasingly under threat, Olivia Laing draws on her own experience of protest and alternative medicine to investigate the body and its discontents.
Laing uses the life of the renegade psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich to chart the long struggle for bodily freedom, and grapples with the legacy of some of the most compelling figures of the past century, including Nina Simone, Susan Sontag and Malcolm X.
Even in an era as technologised as our own, the body remains powerful.
In this event, Laing reflects on and celebrates the ways ordinary human bodies can resist oppression and reshape the world.
Olivia Laing is the author of three acclaimed works of non-fiction: To the River, The Trip to Echo Spring and The Lonely City, which has sold over 100,000 copies worldwide.
Her first novel, Crudo, was a Sunday Times top ten bestseller and won the 2019 James Tait Memorial Prize.
Laing writes on art and culture for publications including The Guardian, New York Times and frieze, and in 2020 published collected writing on art, Funny Weather: Art in an Emergency.
This event is presented in partnership with Waterstones and pre-recorded exclusively for the Southbank Centre.
‘A brave writer whose books open up fundamental questions about life and art’
Need to know
For ages 16+
Copies of Everybody are available for £20. The books are sent out by Waterstones via post (postage is included in the price).
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First broadcast: available from 7.30pm on Fri 30 Apr and for seven days on demand.
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