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Philippe Lançon on Disturbance: Surviving Charlie Hebdo

January 29, 2020

Writer and Charlie Hebdo columnist Philippe Lançon survived the last day of his life—January 7, 2015. But his jaw, mangled by a terrorist’s bullet, required countless operations and long hospital stays to repair. Throughout months of reconstructive surgeries, he turned to Kafka, Mann, and Proust to better understand who he’s become and remember who he was before the attack.

Disturbance: Surviving Charlie Hebdo, translated from the French by Steven Rendall, is Lançon’s powerful and award-winning memoir of his grueling medical struggle and emotional recovery. As part of his first U.S. tour, he spoke to writer Dinaw Mengestu and Michael Reynolds, editor-in-chief of Europa Editions, about why literature was an essential part of his remarkable and transformative journey.

This event was made possible by the support of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United-States.