Constructing a Nervous System: Margo Jefferson in Conversation with Elizabeth Kendall

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

6:30 pm

Hybrid (see description for details)

Open to the Public

Margo Jefferson and Elizabeth Kendal with cover of Jefferson's new book
Admission Price

Free; Reservations Required


This program is offered as both an in-person and livestream event. Choose one:




Margo Jefferson
, Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and former longtime arts critic for The New York Times, discusses the anticipated follow-up to her memoir Negroland, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award. In Constructing a Nervous System, Jefferson brings to life the figures who have contributed to her sense of self — family members, jazz musicians, artists, and athletes. The stunning result — combining memoir with reflections on the likes of Josephine Baker, James Baldwin, Kara Walker, Ike Turner, and even Bing Crosby — reveals the mind of one of our great critics, examining both herself and American culture and society. She speaks about the book with fellow memoirist and nonfiction writer Elizabeth Kendall, whose most recent book is Balanchine and the Lost Muse.

Presented with the Leon Levy Center for Biography.

In-person attendees will be checked in at the door. Visitors to the Graduate Center must provide proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have had a negative COVID-19 molecular (PCR) test performed by an accredited lab taken no more than seven days prior to the visit. One-day visitors may submit proof of vaccination by presenting either a CDC Vaccination Card or the NYS Excelsior Pass or supplying proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test by presenting a copy of the lab results.

CUNY students, faculty, and staff must comply with the University’s vaccine policies. Faculty, staff, and students with verified proof of vaccination will use the CUNY Access Pass in Cleared4 to enter the Graduate Center. Please follow the steps outlined in the Building Entry Policy.

Please see Building Entry Policy for more information.

A video of this event will be posted a few days later on our YouTube Channel.

Please contact Jimmy Cok at for CART services or any additional accessibility requests or concerns for in-person events, at least two weeks in advance of the event.​ This event will be livestreamed, and closed captions will be provided.