David Remnick
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SAL Presents

David Remnick

Past Event: Monday, April 19, 2010

At Town Hall Seattle—The Great Hall

Co-Presented by Elliott Bay Book Company.

David Remnick worked as a reporter for The Washington Post for ten years, including four as Moscow correspondent. He joined The New Yorker as a writer in 1992 and has edited the magazine since 1998. His last book, King of the World, a best-selling work on the evolution of Cassius Clay into Muhammad Ali in the midst of the civil-rights movement, was Time magazine’s top non-fiction book of 1998. Lenin’s Tomb, which covers the fall of the Soviet Union, won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994.

Remnick is also the author of Resurrection and two collections of his New Yorker pieces: The Devil Problem & Other Stories and Reporting.

Remnick’s latest book, The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama, is a sweeping and deeply reported look at both the life of the 44th President and the complex saga of race in America that led to his historic election. For this biography, Remnick conducted hundreds of on-the-record interviews to write the fullest narrative possible of a sitting President. He relies on conversations with family, friends, teachers, professors, mentors, donors, and rivals of Barack Obama—as well as with the President himself. His sources include not only members of Obama’s team, but also more complicated figures in his story such as the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Bobby Rush, Jesse Jackson, and Bill Ayers. The Bridge also includes correspondence by Obama as well as letters written by the most important influence in his life, his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, all published here for the first time. In the Prologue to The Bridge, Obama, who has just announced his candidacy, goes to the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, to pay homage to the civil-rights generation, the “Moses generation,” and declares himself the leader of the new generation, the “Joshua generation.” Reflecting on the President’s unique place in history, the veteran congressman and civil-rights leader John Lewis told Remnick, “Barack Obama is what comes at the end of that bridge in Selma.”

Selected Work

The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama (2010)
Reporting: Writings from The New Yorker (2006)
King of the World: Muhammad Ali and the Rise of an American Hero (1998)
Resurrection: The Struggle for a New Russia (1997)
The Devil Problem: And Other True Stories (1996)
Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire (1993)

Books Edited
Fierce Pajamas: An Anthology of Humor Writing from The New Yorker (with Henry Finder, 2001)
Life Stories: Profiles from The New Yorker (2000)
The New Gilded Age: The New Yorker Looks at the Culture of Affluence (2000)
Wonderful Town: New York Stories from The New Yorker (with Susan Choi, 2000)

“Talk of the Town: Comment: Homelands,” The New Yorker, January 2009
“The Dreamer,” The New Yorker, January 2002
“The Moralist,” The New Yorker, July 2002
“September 11, 2001,” The New Yorker, September 2001
“Citizen Kay,” The New Yorker, January 1997
“Kid Dynamite Blows Up,” The New Yorker, September 1992

The Guardian: “The quiet American” – Gaby Wood meets David Remnick
Archive of Remnick articles in The New Yorker
Video interviews 
NPR: ‘New Yorker’ Editor Explores Art of ‘Reporting’
Boston Globe interview
Video: Charlie Rose interview

Event Details

Town Hall Seattle—The Great Hall

1119 8th Ave
Seattle, WA 98101

View directions.

Transportation & Parking

Town Hall Seattle is centrally located at 1119 8th Ave, on the corner of 8th and Seneca. Their venue is served by frequent bus routes, is near access to light rail stations, and close to a number of parking options nearby. Please see their website for more details.


Open Captioning is an option for people who have hearing losses, where a captioning screen displaying the words that are spoken or sung is placed on stage. To make a request for open captioning, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10. Please note: for in-person events at Town Hall Seattle, we appreciate a two-week advance notice to allow us time to secure captioning services. 

Closed Captioning is an option for people who have hearing loss, where captioning displays the words that are spoken or sung at the bottom of the video for online events. Captioning is available for all online events; click the “CC” button to view captions during the event.

Assistive Listening Devices (ALDs) are devices that people with hearing loss use in conjunction with their hearing device (hearing aids or cochlear implants). Town Hall Seattle has a hearing loop system, so you can switch your T-coil hearing aid to telecoil to have the stage’s microphones transmitted directly to your hearing aids. To pick up a headset, check in with any Town Hall usher when you arrive.

Sign Language Interpretation is available upon request for Deaf, DeafBlind, and hard of hearing individuals. To make a request for interpretation, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10, or select “Sign Language Interpretation” from the Accessibility section during your ticket checkout process and we will contact you to confirm details. Please note: we appreciate a two-week advance notice to allow us time to secure interpretation.

Wheelchair Accessible Seating and Accessible Restrooms are available in all sections at Town Hall Seattle, which is fully accessible to ticket holders with physical mobility concerns. Town Hall Seattle recommends that visitors use the 8th Avenue Entrance for events in the Great Hall, and elevators with Braille signage go to all levels within the Hall. The venue has all-gender, ADA-accessible restrooms on the lobby and Forum level. To reserve seating for a specific mobility concern, please contact us at boxoffice@lectures.org or 206.621.2230×10, or select “Wheelchair Accessible or Alternative Seating Options” during ticket checkout, and we will contact you to confirm details. For more details on accessibility features at Town Hall, click here.

Guide and service dogs are welcome.

All-gender restrooms are available.

We are pleased to offer these accessibility services at our venues, and they are provided at no additional cost to ticket holders. Please contact us with any questions and feedback about how we can be more accessible and inclusive. Our Patron Services Manager is available at boxoffice@lectures.org, or Tuesday-Friday, from 12 noon–5 p.m., at 206.621.2230×10.

For more accessibility information, please head to lectures.org/accessibility. If you would like to make accessibility arrangements you do not see listed here, please contact our box office or select “Other Accommodations” from the Accessibility section during your ticket checkout process, and we will contact you to confirm details.