Jai Chakrabarti: A Play for the End of the World

by | Dec 1, 2022 | What’s Happening

Tuesday, January 17, 12 pm

Watch from Home—Virtual

In Jai Chakrabarti’s A Play for the End of the World, Jaryk Smith, a survivor of the Warsaw Ghetto, and Lucy Gardner, a southerner, newly arrived in New York City in 1972, are in the first bloom of love when they receive word that Jaryk’s oldest friend has died under mysterious circumstances in a rural village in eastern India. Traveling there alone to collect his friend’s ashes, Jaryk soon finds himself enmeshed in the chaos of local politics and efforts to stage a play in protest against the government—the same play that he performed as a child in Warsaw as an act of resistance against the Nazis.

Torn between the survivor’s guilt he has carried for decades and his feelings for Lucy, Jaryk must decide how to honor both the past and the present, and how to accept a happiness he is not sure he deserves.

A Play for the End of the World won the National Jewish Book Award for debut fiction and is long-listed for the PEN/Faulkner Award. Chakrabarti is also the author of the forthcoming story collection, A Small Sacrifice for an Enormous Happiness.

Part of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and Simon Family JCC’s Lee & Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival, this event is part of the Festival’s Arts + Ideas Book of the Month series: Book-club-style conversations that allow participants to personally engage with authors. This event is free with pre-registration required. For more details and to register, visit JewishVA.org/BookFest.