Livestream: Lizzie Stark, Egg: A Dozen Ovatures, with Kirstin Chen
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The egg is a paradox―both alive and not alive―and a symbol as old as culture itself. In this wide-ranging and delightful journey through its natural and cultural history, Lizzie Stark explores the egg’s deep meanings, innumerable uses, and metabolic importance through a dozen dazzling specimens.
From Mali to Finland, mythologies around the globe have invested the egg with powers of regeneration and fecundity, often ascribing the origin of the world to a cosmic egg. An oracle to Romans, fought over by Gold Rush gangs, used as the foundation of the Clown Egg Registry, and blasted into space, the egg has taken on larger proportions than, say, the ovum of an ostrich.
It has starred in global dishes from the Korean comfort food ttukbaegi gyeranjjim to the less regaled yet iconic soft-boiled egg. Stark writes a biography of French-born chef Jacques Pépin through his egg creations, and weaves in her personal experiences, like attempting to make the perfect omelet or trying her hand at pysanky―the Ukrainian art of egg decoration. She also explores her fraught relationship to the eggs in her body due to a familial link to cancer, and shares her delight in becoming a mother.
The Candy House author Jennifer Egan says, "Egg is cheeky, playful, and deeply informative―in short, a complete delight," and Mary Roach, bestselling author of Fuzz, says, "Egg is eclectic and funny, informative and endlessly surprising, but also deeply personal....Like the egg itself, this book is a perfect, miraculous package."
Filled with colorful characters and fascinating morsels, Egg guarantees that you’ll never take this delicate ovoid for granted again.
Lizzie Stark is a participation designer and the author of two nonfiction books, Pandora’s DNA and Leaving Mundania. Her writing has been featured in the Washington Post, the Daily Beast, io9, and the Philadelphia Inquirer, among other publications.
Kirstin Chen is the New York Times best-selling author of three novels. Her latest, Counterfeit, is a Reese Witherspoon book club pick, a Roxane Gay book club pick, and a New York Times Editors’ Choice. It has also been recommended by The Washington Post, People Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, Vogue, Time, Oprah Daily, Harper’s Bazaar, Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Parade, and more. Translation rights have sold in seven languages and television rights have been optioned by Sony Pictures. Her previous two novels are Bury What We Cannot Take and Soy Sauce for Beginners. She has received fellowships and awards from the Steinbeck Fellows Program, Sewanee, Hedgebrook, Djerassi, the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference, the Toji Cultural Foundation, and the National Arts Council of Singapore. Her writing has appeared in The Cut, Real Simple, Literary Hub, Writer’s Digest, Zyzzyva, and the Best New Singaporean Short Stories. She holds an MFA from Emerson College and a BA from Stanford University. Born and raised in Singapore, she lives in New York City.
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