Event: Women, Creativity and Self Destruction with Sabrina Chapadjiev 22.05.09


Sabrina Chapadjiev, editor of Live Through This (Seven Stories Press, May 2008) will give her only London talk on the relationship between creativity and self-destruction, as part of a UK tour.

Live Through This is a fearless exploration of women’s silent rage, the power that can come from internal struggle, and the possibility of transforming this burning force into fierce and enlightened work.

In a collection of original stories, essays, artwork, and photography, Nan Goldin, Eileen Myles, bell hooks, and other cutting-edge artists explore their use of art to survive madness, abuse, incest, depression. Together they show that creative women are not destined to the fate of lost visionaries such as Woolf, Sexton, Arbus, and Plath. The book confronts the brutality many women and girls encounter in the world around them, and bravely takes as its subject the often misunderstood violence they at times inflict upon themselves.

Sabrina will be discussing the themes that came up when she was editing the pieces with the authors.

The Feminist Library,
2nd floor meeting room,
5 Westminster Bridge Road SE1 7XW
Nearest tubes: Waterloo, Elephant and Castle, Lambeth North

Talk starts: 7.30pm, Friday 22 May
(The Library will be opened specially from 7.00pm for visitors to look around)

It’s free! But any donations to Sabrina or the Library would be very welcome.

Free drinks and snacks will also be available

About the book: Published in the USA by Seven Stories Press. Contributors include: Nan Goldin, bell hooks, Patricia Smith, Cristy Road, Carol Queen, Annie Sprinkle, Elizabeth Stephens, Carolyn Gage, Eileen Myles, Fly, Diane DiMassa, Bonfire Madigan, Inga Muscio, Kate Bornstein, Toni Blackman, Nicole Blackman, Silas Howard, Daphne Gottlieb and Stephanie Howell

More information about the book and contributors is available at Sabrina’s Website

About the tour: Sabrina Chapadjiev is a US-based writer/artist/performer. She says “While putting Live Through This together, I found myself constantly attempting to understand what makes a person take their silent rage out on themselves, rather than understand it. Themes of shame, control, power and isolation came up continually – and soon I realized that each artists’ story shone some light on why some of the most intelligent and powerful people I knew were destroying themselves.” Sabrina has toured widely round the States giving workshops based on the material in the book, and decided she would like to present her work in the UK.


“The 16 essays and visuals that make up Live Through This plum the depths of out-of-control lives, examining how self-destruction functions as both a hindrance and a productive challenge. Unlike what Hollywood would like us to believe about them, the contributors—artists, writers, and musicians—are neither weak nor one-dimensional.”

“Live Through This…[enacts a] scarred and gorgeous community.”
—MAKE/SHIFT MAGAZINE, Jen Cross, fall/winter 2008/2009

“[Live Through This] posits a hopeful message: that while the quirks and sensitivities of a creative mind often seem predisposed to depression, they are also the exact qualities that provide a special set of tools with which to find a way through the darkest moments.”
—BUST MAGAZINE by Emma Hamilton

“The 20 essayists, novelists, photographers, visual artists, cartoonists, musicians and burlesque performers of
Live Through This testify to lives of survival– turning tears and tendencies toward
mania, depression, and self-mutilation into powerful lessons”
—CURVE MAGAZINE by Tania Hammidi, October 2008

“Women’s and cultural studies students, take note.”
—NOW TORONTO Review by Tara-Michelle Ziniuk

“Chicago’s own Sabrina Chapadjiev edits this raw collection of art, photography, essays and stories in which several female artists free their fiercest emotions. From experiences such as abuse, depression and other self-destructive habits come courageous revelations of truth. ”

“We know the story of the brilliant woman who destroys herself.
The woman artist who is. . . “Controversial while alive but sanctified in death.” In this powerful and unique collection edited by Sabrina Chapadjiev, we hear from nineteen writers, artists and thinkers who are alive and well—and indeed, often controversial. . .”
—GO MAGAZINE Review by Joseph Keckler

“This powerful collection of voices provides new insight into the concept of self-destruction and, perhaps more importantly, offers hope to everyone who has felt these forces.”
—AFTERELLEN.COM by Heather A O’Neill

“Sabrina Chapadjiev’s anthology, Live Through This: On Creativity and Self Destruction, strikes me in all ways as a carefully crafted object—which so few books are these days.”
FEMINISTING.COM review by-Courtney Martin, author of “Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters”


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