One of my favorite parts of 2011 was the inauguration of “Gustavo's Awesome Lecture Series!” in which I did my best Dick Cavett impersonation while interviewing authors, intellectuals, and other general awesome people at the Fullerton Public Library, under the auspices of the Cal State Fullerton Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies. Unfortunately, I had to put the series on hold this year, because I had to learn how to be an editor and shit.
But now that I learned all that I can (which means your favorite infernal rag is in DESMADRE hands haha), and now that the Weekly is the official OC eyes and ears for KCRW-FM 89.9, I'm bringing back the series (held the last Thursday of every month) with an all-star cast of heavy hitters, cult favorites, rising stars, and more!
January 31 kicks off the series with award-winning Los Angeles Times reporter and best-selling author Hector Tobar. Though an LA man through and through, Tobar's OC resume is impeccable: a graduate of UC Irvine's legendary MFA program in writing, his latest novel, The Barbarian Nurseries, is set in Orange County and deals with February's topic: wealthy wabs.
February 28 brings USC sociology professor and Placentia gal Jody Agius Vallejo (at left) whose Barrios to Burbs: The Making of the Mexican-American Middle Class just recently sold out its run–a stunning accomplishment for an academic book. She'll discuss that book, along with other research projects she's working on.
March 28 will be a night of Orange County history, as the authors of the forthcoming Mexican-American Baseball in Orange County will share pictures, stories, and books from their awesome book (I wrote the forward).
April 25 is an evening with Pilar Marrero, the legendary political reporter for La Opinión and a scourge of KFI's JohnKen–which means she's an eternal chingona. Her first book, Killing The American Dream: How Anti-Immigration Extremists are Destroying the Nation, is sure to give the bluehairs in the audience the heebie jeebies!
May 30 goes to UCLA professor Otto Santa Ana, perhaps the nation's premier analyst of representations of Latinos in the American media. We'll be talking about his career, and especially his latest book, Juan in a Million: The Representation of Latinos on Network News, which will have you rooting for the destruction of the MSM for good.
I still haven't decided who's sitting in the hot seat June and July, but I'm thinking of a big-name musician and maybe a film. As always, the lecture will take place at the Fullerton Public Library, start at 7 p.m., and the lecture is FREE! GO GO GO, and spread the word!!!