WBUR CitySpace: Adam Gopnik

WBUR CitySpace: Adam Gopnik

Monday, March 20, 2023 - 6:30PM ET
Event address: 
WBUR CitySpace
890 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02215

We are proud to be the official bookseller for this CitySpace event.

The Real Work: The New Yorker's Adam Gopnik on the mystery of mastery

Join former WBUR Morning Edition host Bob Oakes for a conversation with New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik about his new book, “The Real Work: On the Mystery of Mastery,” where he investigates a foundational human question: how do we learn—and master—a new skill? The pair will discuss why people seek to better themselves in the first place and how true mastery, in any field, requires mastering other people’s minds.

Copies of the book will be available. Gopnik will sign copies following the conversation.

About “The Real Work”
For decades, Adam Gopnik has been one of our most beloved writers, a brilliantly perceptive critic of art, food, France, and more. But recently, he became obsessed by a fundamental matter: How did the people he was writing about learn their outlandish skill, whether it was drawing a nude or baking a sourdough loaf? In “The Real Work”—his title the term magicians use for the accumulated craft that makes for a great trick—Gopnik apprentices himself to an artist, a dancer, a boxer, and even a driving instructor (from the DMV), among others, trying his late-middle-age hand at things he assumed were beyond him. He finds that mastering a skill is a process of methodically breaking down and building up, piece by piece—and that true mastery, in any field, requires mastering other people’s minds.