Picador-Fulbright Roundtable Big Hit

The Picador-Fulbright Roundtable on American film, literature, and society was attended by some forty students and members of the University of Leipzig community. The overwhelming response by participants was “When can we do that again?!”.

Picador Professor John Haskell and Fulbright-Leipzig Chair Ben Alpers joined students and colleagues to kick off the roundtable in the Villa Tillmanns over some pizza and beer (and sparkling water) to talk about film, literature, and American society.

Those gathered then moved into the screening room where the classic film “The Sweet Smell of Success” was shown. Crister Garrett opened the evening by briefly noting that this was a wonderful experiment in joining literary studies, cultural studies, and film studies to offer students and colleagues a very high-caliber but informal event to have an open dialog about American society, especially in a transatlantic context (the later discussion would bring in “La Dolce Vita” as a comparison to the American film).

Ben Alpers provided a short introduction to the film and its historical context. Then everyone settled in for the screening of the ninety-minute film. Afterward John Haskell provided his keen insights into the characters, settings, and plot(s) that he read from the film. There followed a free-wheeling exchange between Ben and John about the film’s structure and meaning. The audience jumped in and there ensued a lively exchange for over an hour. Guests were then invited to some more refreshments, cold pizza, and more conversation.

To see some pictures from the event, just click on the accompanying series of photos.

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