Fatal Discord: Michael Massing on the Art Floor
Tuesday February 27: 7:30PM – 8:30PM
During the time of the Northern Renaissance, few minds were greater or more influential that that of Desiderius Erasmus. While the likes of Leonardo, Raphael and Michelangelo were revolutionizing the world of art, Erasmus sought to overhaul Europe’s intellectual and religious existence, developing a new way of life in direct opposition to the Roman Church's overbearing power. His revised edition of the New Testament even earned him the reputation of a beloved prophet. However, his contemporary, Martin Luther, is much more well remembered by the history books for his more radical demands for change. In Fatal Discord, Michael Massing paints a vivid picture of the relationship between these two men, and the intellectual differences that created a rift between them. Chronicling his great deeds and the bitter rivalry between the two men, Massing makes a strong case for establishing Erasmus as a key figure in the development of western civilization, equal to, or greater than Martin Luther.
Join us in the 2nd Floor Art Department as Michael sits down with award-winning historian and journalist Kai Bird!
Michael Massing is a former executive editor of the Columbia Journalism Review and a frequent contributor to the New York Review of Books. His work has also appeared in the New York Times, The Nation, The New Yorker, and the American Prospect. He is the author of two books, The Fix and Now They Tell Us: The American Press and Iraq, and is a MacArthur Fellow. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard College and a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science. He lives in New York City.
Kai Bird is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and journalist, and the Executive Director and Distinguished Lecturer of CUNY Graduate Center's Leon Levy Center for Biography. His most recent book, The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames, was a New York Times best-seller. He chronicled his childhood in the Middle East in his memoir, Crossing Mandelbaum Gate: Coming of Age Between the Arabs and Israelis--which was a Finalist for both the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. He is the acclaimed author of biographies of John J. McCloy, McGeorge Bundy, and William Bundy. He won the Pulitzer Prize for biography in 2006 for American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer (co-authored with Martin J. Sherwin). His work includes critical writings on the Vietnam War, Hiroshima, Nuclear weapons, the Cold War, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the CIA. Bird and Sherwin also won the National Books Critics Circle Award and the Duff Cooper Prize for History. In September 2016 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Carleton College. He is an elected member of the prestigious Society of American Historians.