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5 speakers 15 minutes each

Wed 28th May 2014

The Tabernacle

7pm

Another Great Day at Sea

Another Great Day at Sea

The most genre-defying, sharpest and wittiest voice in literature Geoff Dyer in conversation with philosopher Alain de Botton As a child Geoff Dyer spent long hours making and (blotchily) painting model fighter planes. So adult Geoff jumped at the chance of a two-week residency aboard an aircraft carrier. Another Great Day at Sea chronicles Dyer’s experiences on the USS George H.W. Bush as he navigates the routines and protocols of “carrier-world”. It takes us from the elaborate choreography of the flight deck through miles of walkways and hatches to kitchens serving meals for a crew of five thousand to the deafening complexity of catapult and arresting gear. Underlying Dyer’s efforts to overcome the disadvantages of being the oldest, tallest (actually, second tallest), and most self-conscious person on the boat is an intense fascination with the military world. In recording daily life on board the ship, Dyer illuminates a society where discipline and conformity, dedication and optimism, become a form of self-expression. Writers in Residence is a set of books, originated by Alain de Botton, that bring together some of the greatest writers and photographers on the planet to reveal the normally faceless organizations that shape the modern world.

Geoff Dyer

Geoff Dyer

Geoff Dyer is the author of four novels: Paris Trance, The Search, The Colour of Memory, and, most recently, Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi; a critical study of John Berger, Ways of Telling; five genre-defying titles: But Beautiful, The Missing of the Somme, Out of Sheer Rage, Yoga For People Who Can’t Be Bothered To Do It, and The Ongoing Moment. His collection of essays, Otherwise Known as the Human Condition, won a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2012. He is also the editor of John Berger: Selected Essays and co-editor, with Margaret Sartor, of What Was True: The Photographs and Notebooks of William Gedney. A new book, Another Great Day at Sea, about life aboard the USS George H W Bush, will be published in May. Dyer currently lives in Venice, California.

Alain de Botton

Alain de Botton

Alain de Botton was born in Zurich, Switzerland in 1969 and now lives in London. He is a writer of essayistic books that have been described as a ‘philosophy of everyday life.’ He’s written on love, travel, architecture and literature. His books have been bestsellers in 30 countries. Alain also started and helps to run The School of Life, dedicated to a new vision of education. His latest book, published in February 2014, is titled The News: A User’s Manual.