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Naomi Wolf, On Tour

Naomi Wolf is back.

The inimitable Naomi Wolf is back this May with her new book: Outrages.

The bestselling author of The Beauty Myth, Vagina and The End of America illuminates a dramatic history – how the Obscene Publications Act of 1857 led to a maelstrom, with reverberations lasting to our day.

At once, dissent and morality, deviancy and normalcy, became modern legal concepts: if writers, editors, printers and booksellers did not uphold the law and the morals of society they faced serious repercussions. Wolf depicts the ways this censorship played out – decades before the infamous trial of Oscar Wilde – among a bohemian group of ‘sexual dissidents’, including Walt Whitman in America and the English critic John Addington Symonds, who fell in love with Whitman’s homoerotic voice in Leaves of Grass. This was a dangerous love, as dire prison terms and even executions became penalties for such love, even if only expressed on the page.

Join us this summer for one of her unmissable events!

Monday 20th May

London Review Bookshop at Logan Hall with Erica Wagner

For the first event of her UK tour, and her only London event, Wolf will be in conversation with the literary journalist Erica Wagner.

Tuesday 21st May

Charleston Festival with Miranda Sawyer

Naomi Wolf in conversation with Miranda Sawyer, journalist, broadcaster and author of Out of Time. 

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Wednesday 22nd May

Bristol Festival of Ideas

The Bristol Festival of Ideas aims to stimulate people’s minds and passions with an inspiring programme of discussion and debate throughout the year.

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Thursday 23rd May

Blackwell’s Oxford at the Sheldonian

A very special after-hours ‘Philosophy in the Bookshop’ event with Nigel Warburton and feminist activist and author, Naomi Wolf to discuss her new book Outrages.

Friday 24th May

Dublin Writer’s Festival

Challenging Times: An Evening With Naomi Wolf

We’re delighted to welcome Naomi Wolf, one of the world’s most influential feminists and an internationally-bestselling author since the age of 23 to the ILFDublin stage. From challenging the cosmetics industry and the marketing of unrealistic beauty standards in her landmark debut The Beauty Myth to The End of America, a call to preserve liberty and democracy that became a New York Times bestseller, Naomi Wolf doesn’t just comment on the world’s most pervasive problems, she aims to solve them. Her latest book Outrages: Sex, Censorship and the Criminalization of Love interrogates the root of modern censorship: from its impact on British and American society, to gay and women’s rights, to its far-reaching effects on Western culture… Don’t miss the chance to hear this charismatic speaker.

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Saturday 25th May

Hay Festival

Wolf illuminates a dramatic history – how a single English law in 1857 led to a maelstrom, with reverberations lasting to our day. Chaired by Matthew d’Ancona.

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7th June

Borris Festival

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8th June

Belfast Literature Festival

Join Naomi Wolf, one of the most influential feminists of our time, as she discusses her new book Outrages and her fascinating career as a social activist, bestselling author, journalist and former political advisor to Al Gore and Bill Clinton.

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At once, dissent and morality, deviancy and normalcy, became modern legal concepts: if writers, editors, printers and booksellers did not uphold the law and the morals of society they faced serious repercussions.

Wolf depicts the ways this censorship played out – decades before the infamous trial of Oscar Wilde – among a bohemian group of ‘sexual dissidents’, including Walt Whitman in America and the English critic John Addington Symonds, who fell in love with Whitman’s homoerotic voice in Leaves of Grass. This was a dangerous love, as dire prison terms and even executions became penalties for such love, even if only expressed on the page.

Algernon Charles Swinburne, Dante and Christina Rossetti, Walter Pater and painter Simeon Solomon were among the artists whose lives were shadowed with jeopardy. But Wolf also reveals how, cleverly, they crafted their works to avoid the censor.

Wolf recounts how a dying Symonds, inspired by his love for Whitman, helped to write the book on ‘sexual inversion’ one of the foundations of our modern understanding of homosexuality. By shining a light on his secret memoir, rightfully understood as one of the first gay rights manifestos in the west, Outrages also shows how the literature of love ultimately triumphs over censorship.

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