Tue, 4 April 2023

6:30 pm - 7:45 pm BST

The Real Work – How We Learn and Master New Skills

Adam Gopnik

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The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik apprenticed himself to a dancer, an artist, a boxer and even a driving instructor in a wildly creative quest to discover how we obtain mastery.

Adam Gopnik is one of our most beloved writers, a brilliantly perceptive critic of art, food, France, and more. Recently he became obsessed by a fundamental matter: how do the subjects of his writing learn their outlandish skills?

To find out the answer to the mystery of mastery, he apprenticed himself to a dazzling array of talented people from many walks of life, trying his late middle-aged hand at things he assumed were beyond him. He discovered that mastering a skill is a process of methodically breaking down and building up, piece by piece – and that true mastery, in any field, requires mastering other people’s minds.

For anyone who has ever wanted to better themselves, this is an unmissable chance to learn how to learn from a true master of his craft – and a jack of many other trades besides.

Praise for the works of Adam Gopnik:

‘A real treat . . . Heartening proof of a life lived fully, and fully savoured’ – Times Literary Supplement’

‘Gopnik has written with entrancing penetration on just about everything’ – Spectator

‘Witty and wise. Gopnik is a sleek stylist, and a high-minded, big-hearted moralist into the bargain’ – Observer

‘Adam Gopnik is a dazzling talent – hilarious, winning and deft’ – Malcolm Gladwell

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Adam Gopnik

Staff Writer, The New Yorker

Adam Gopnik is a staff writer at The New Yorker. He has won three National Magazine awards, the George Polk Award and the Canadian National Magazine Award Gold Medal. He is a regular guest speaker for radio, television, film and lecture series, including BBC Radio 4’s ‘A Point of View’. The author of numerous bestselling books, including Paris to the Moon, he lives in New York City.

Hannah MacInnes

Presenter, Podcaster and Host of How To Academy’s live programmes.

Hannah MacInnes is a broadcaster and journalist. Alongside hosting How To Academy’s live programmes and podcast, she presents a cultural show on Times Radio and interviews on-stage at a number of other major literary events. She is the host of The Klosters Forum Podcast series and has written for the Radio Times, the Evening Standard and TLS. Before going freelance she worked for 8 years at BBC Newsnight, as Planning Editor and as a Producer / Filmmaker.